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10:10 | 18th November 2017

Reviews: Live Shows

Mon 6 Nov, 2017
By Robert Ingham


switching from wide-eyed wonderers to mischievous minxes in the blink of an eye.

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Lord Dismiss Us - theatre review

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Lord Dismiss Us, the latest production at Above The Stag theatre, is a truly wonderful piece of theatre, superbly adapted and directed by Glenn Chandler from the novel of the same name by Michael Campbell.

Set in the UK in 1967, just before homosexuality was decriminalised, at Weatherhill, an all-boys private school, it is the story of what happens when a homophobic headmaster takes over running the school which is rife with unruly pupils who like nothing more than misbehaving behind the bike sheds and drinking the communion wine when the chaplain’s back is turned.

There really is nothing to dislike about this play – it is as warm as it is affecting, beautifully acted by a cast who capture all the nuances from Glenn’s witty and script, and has some genuinely hysterical moments throughout – whether that’s from the chaplain (a rather captivating turn from David Mullen, who also plays the cantankerous Headmaster) talking about his paintings, or the boys outrageously performing the end of year school play. Julie Teal is super as the Headmaster’s wife, Cecelia, who moves almost cat-like from supporting spouse to being the obvious power behind the throne.



The boys are sublime, loveable rogues, even when you want to dislike them. Joe Bence, Lewis Alcock, Jonathan Blaydon, and Matthew Oakes-Rogers are tour-de forces, switching from wide-eyed wonderers to mischievous minxes in the blink of an eye. They relish their roles, whether it’s the new boy, Prefect or Head Boy and take you on an emotional journey of first loves, jealousy and expectations of living up to your parent’s successes.

An incredible, evocative set from David Shields is beautifully lit by Chris Withers and, whether or not you are a fan of the ending, you will certainly feel immersed by the imaginative use of props and clever use of space. One of the best productions at Above The Stag theatre this year.

Get yourself a ticket as the Weatherhill boys’ term ends on 19th November.


 

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