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See How They Run

Published Friday 21 February 2014 at 10:57 by Paul Vale

Arguably one of Britain’s best loved comedies, Philip King’s See How They Run premiered in London in 1945 offering something of a tonic to theatregoers at the tail end of the Second World War. The play’s farcical structure coupled with instantly recognisable British stereotypes was an instant hit and still bears regular revivals nearly 70 years later.

Rachel Denning and Francesca Mills in See How They Run at the Churchill Theatre, Bromley

Rachel Denning and Francesca Mills in See How They Run at the Churchill Theatre, Bromley Photo: Paul Clapp

This tour by the newly-formed Reduced Height Theatre Company is the brainchild of film and television actor Warwick Davis, who aims to broaden the horizon of theatrical opportunities for short actors by presenting popular plays and incorporating reduced-height sets. Farce is a notoriously gruelling art form for any actor and while the average height of the cast may be reduced, the comedy, energy level and pace remain at full throttle throughout.

Rachel Denning as the unconventional parson’s wife Penelope is an absolute pleasure, grounding the farcical elements of the plot with precision timing and an impeccably dry delivery. Denning is challenged at either end of the scale by suitably pompous Francesca Papagno as the buxom Miss Skillon and the sheer force of nature that is Francesca Mills, playing the cheeky maid Ida.

Davis acquits himself adequately as a vaguely distracted Reverend Lionel Toop, given a run for his money by no less than four other clerics, including Jamie John as Humphrey, Jon Key as the Bishop and a particularly neat turn from Phil Holden, clinging precariously to the edge of sanity as a pragmatic Lance Corporal Clive Winton in disguise.

Production information

Churchill, Bromley, February 20-22, then touring until May 10

Author:
Philip King
Director:
Eric Potts
Producer:
Warwick Davis, Kevin and George Wood for The Reduced Height Theatre Company
Cast include:
Warwick Davis, Rachel Denning, Phil Holden, Francesca Mills, Francesca Papagno, Jon Key
Running time:
2hrs 10mins

Production information displayed was believed correct at time of review. Information may change over the run of the show.

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Run sheet

Churchill, Bromley London
February 20-22
Palace Southend-on-Sea
February 24-March 1
Belgrade Coventry
March 3- 8
New Victoria Woking
March 10-15
Devonshire Park Eastbourne
March 17-22
Richmond Theatre London
March 24-29
Swan High Wycombe
March 31-April 5
Derby Theatre Derby
April 7-12
Theatre Royal, Lyric Plymouth
April 14-19
Civic Darlington
April 22-26
Opera House Manchester
April 29-May 3
New Cardiff
May 6-10
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