Six years ago I went to see a brand new play by Liverpool playwright Fred Lawless.
Those legs are definitely not funny.
Those are serious legs!
Directed once again by the talented Bob Eaton who has the knack of knowing exactly how to shape a script into the rawkus type of comedy for which the Royal Court is renowned, resulting in a tight, fast-moving play with the right mix of innuendo, slapstick and farce, liberally seasoned of course with that very special brand of scouse humour.
Set in a failing Dry-cleaners, the three owners, played by Eithne Browne, Angela Simms and Lindzi Germain, set up a scam to hire out customers’ designer dresses. They need the extra cash to pay their crooked landlord (Jake Abraham).
When the landlord’s P.A. is about to walk out wearing a dress belonging to a famous footballer’s wife, the trio’s feckless apprentice (Lenny Wood) knocks her out with a lungful of dry cleaning solvent, the main constituent of which is chloroform.
How actress Suzanne Collins stopped herself from falling apart laughing as the tight red dress was unceremoniously stripped from her “unconscious” body is a miracle.
And whereas Suzanne Collins’s character emerged from her chloroform-induced coma as her same beautiful self, things turned rather ugly for the policeman who’d suffered the same fate.
Because I was going to be away for Press Night, I got to review the play on it’s first night. But you wouldn’t have known it. The play was as tight and as slick as if this talented bunch of actors had properly settled into the run despite the six years that had passed since they’d done it all before.
Being set in a dry-cleaners’ they had obviously ironed out any problems well before the first curtain-up. Even new recruit Angela Simms slotted seamlessly into the cast as the cutest, dizziest doll at the laundry, alongside the amazing Ethne Browne and that mistress of expression, Lindzi Germain.
A Fistful of Collars is a 5 Star Comedy and I really cannot recommend it too highly. It is what the Royal Court is all about.
Catch it at The Royal Court Liverpool until August 20th.