Lucky Stiff - 20 September 1997

I approached this show knowing none of the music and only the basic plot. The reason I booked in the first place was because Frances Ruffelle was in it. Well I am so glad I saw it. This is a delightful comedy, with music which is very tuneful to the ear. Paul Baker played Henry Witherspoon, whose inheritance of 6 million will only be in his hands once he has taken his dead uncle to Monte Carlo, excellently and he worked very well with Fracnes Ruffelle as Annabel Glick who represents the dogs home which will have the inheritance if Henry fails in his task. From opposing camps they gradually unite together and the dogs home and inheritance is forgotten. Paul has a lovely voice and his facial expressions and gestures are extremely funny. Frances played the prim and proper Annabel perfectly and sang a lovely song 'at times like this I sure could use a dog'!! . Tracie Bennett played Rita, former lover of the dead uncle who had embezzelded the 6 million from her husband and blamed her brother. Tracie was excellent as the 'gun totting Rita' and has a great ability for comedy. All these charcaters arrive in Monte Carlo and throw in the drunk maid, flirty bellboy, a french dancer and many other larger than life characters this makes up a great show. The Bridewell was the perfect place for this show and I believe it would do very well in venues of a similar size. This is an intimate show which would be lost on a huge stage

Enter the Guardsman - 20 September 1997

I was slightly familiar with this show from the Musical of the Year cd. Briefly an actor believes his wife is getting tired of him so he pretends to be a guardsman to see if she would be unfaithful to him, so is she ? well I won't tell you how it ends. This had a wonderfully witty script and in Nicky Henson a very cynical and 'wooden spoon stirring' playwright who narrates and interacts with the actor and the actress, Alexander Hanson and Janie Dee. Alex Hanson was excellent as the husband jeolous of himself, especially when he had to sing as himself and as the guardsman. Janie Dee has a face which could forever leave you guessing as to her thoughts. She and Alex played off each other very well. Angela Richards was the dresser who had herself once been a star of the stage and sings a lovely song called 'Waiting in the wings' The Donmar Warhouse is a very intimate theatre and with this show you feel as if you are a fly on the wall watching these people's relationship unfold. I highly recommend it.

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