I’m trying to up my theatre game this year, so was glad to get a chance to see The Play That Goes Wrong. I’d seen a snippet on some variety show on TV and became quickly entranced with the idea of seeing the full thing on stage.
It’s such a brilliant show, starting simply but gradually building in terms of farce, disaster and hysteria. What’s clever about it though is that by the end, far from wondering what else can possibly go wrong for this poor haphazard bunch of people, you’re almost willing the next thing to happen to see just what lengths they will go to to try and keep going. I was even impressed with the pre-show action, featuring some silent comedy with a member of the audience. The cast are in character long before the play actually begins and it’s all the better for it.
I have, in the long distant past, enjoyed a brief and ill-fated stint at an amateur dramatics group, and with those experiences comes a real understanding of everything going on in this play. It’s great to recognise the different attitudes of the cast members (that this is their big break, that they are doing the best they can, that they just want to get to the end without passing out) as well as fully understand the simple notion of what can go wrong, going very wrong indeed.
But you don’t have to have attempted treading the boards to love this show. It’s a laugh a minute ride that sweeps you along until you’re exhausted. Highly recommended.