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Review of 'Beyond A Joke'
presented by
Bottisham Players, May 15-17th, 2003

For all my hunting among growing mountains of paper that threaten to engulf me, I cannot for the life of me find my programme for the Bottisham Players' last outpouring in early May. Therefore I cannot give due praise by name to the many actors who worked so hard to give the audience such pleasure. You cannot beat a live performance and as usual The Players turned up trumps. The lead male with an acre of lines to learn grew more like Basil Fawlty as the play progressed. Ali White was - well - Ali White while as for the vicar and the grumpy father in law at the end - Olivier and Gielgud could have done no better. Star Oscar for me this time was the corpse who appeared once in the closet and again at various times being pushed in the wheelbarrow. He was word perfect but to my great disappointment he did not for the curtain call for our applause. Maybe he was still in character. We went on the Thursday, the first and usually least popular night but even so I felt that a village of two and a half thousand souls could have made a better show of it. The small hall was a third empty and there were too many bums on living room chairs at home. To see live actors performing their socks off in your own community beats the best episode of Eastenders ever screened.

John Humphreys