#chesterculture – Another Fine Mess – Chester Little Theatre – Saturday 11th June 2016

Fans of the legendary masters of comedy Laurel and Hardy are in for a treat as a play about the famous duo heads to Chester Little Theatre for one night only.
Written by Gillian Plowman and produced by White Cobra Productions who return to Chester following their staging of John Godber’s “September in The Rain at the theatre last year.

“Another Fine Mess” is a heart warming comedy about the ups and downs of Stephen and Phil whose tribute act to Laurel and Hardy includes some of the duo’s classic sketches.

As the pair rehearse in the back room of a pub, real life intervenes.  A shocking revelation from Phil strains their relationship, possibly to destruction.

The play is being staged at Chester Little Theatre in Gloucester Street, Newtown, Chester on Saturday 11th June at 7.45pm.

The two actors with the daunting task of recreating the famous duo on stage for a modern audience are Richard Jordan as Laurel/Stephen and Paul Fowler as Hardy/Phil. Richard has twice won the best actor award at the Isle of Man drama festival in the last three years whilst Paul is making his first appearance for White Cobra, having directed their production of Days of Wine Roses which took the best play award in the British final in 2014.

Richard says “to play Stan Laurel, half of the most famous double act in the history of cinema is a huge thrill, and a huge responsibility.

The three-strong cast is completed by Kate Billingham who plays Meg, Stephen’s girlfriend. She is the organisational brains behind the tribute act and plays bit parts in the comedy sketches, such as a moll and Stan’s wife.

The play is Directed by Martin Borley-Cox who said “Laurel & Hardy’s comedy shines through in the play, by recreating some of Stan & Ollie’s classic sketches, you realise how clever they were. They were incredibly funny. Even today, nearly 100 years after their first film together, they’re guaranteed to make you smile.”

“But, this play has some big surprises too. Because of Phil’s revelations, emotions run high and laughter quickly turns to tears. But at the end of the day, I think this is an incredibly uplifting play. Laurel & Hardy had a partnership, and a friendship, that lasted a lifetime and quite rightly our play is all about friendship.”

Another Fine Mess is part of a double bill of plays.

The accompanying play is Housebound by Simon Mawdsley.

Director Paul Fowler says it involves “a man in a mask and a woman in real trouble. Add some phobias, a wasp and a dash of reggae and you’re left with a big-hearted comic drama full of menace, laughter and dirty carpets!” 

White Cobra is one of the country’s most successful small theatre companies. In the last three years they’ve won 15 awards for acting, directing, set design, costume and make-up. In 2014, White Cobra claimed four awards at the British All Winners’ Drama Festival. They’re also through to the finals of this year’s competition which is held in July.

Another Fine Mess
Chester Little Theatre
Saturday 11th June 2016 – 7.45pm
Tickets: £10/£9(concs). To book phone TicketSource 0333 666 3366 or click here. Booking charges apply.

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