Perfect Wedding review at Mill at Sonning – ‘great comic timing’
The rituals of a wedding are prime fodder for a farce. The heightened emotions surrounding the event have been a huge source of humour since Plautus and even today, reality television programmes such as Don’t Tell the Bride manage to exploit nuptials for comic effect.
The international success of Robin Hawdon’s Perfect Wedding is perhaps testament to the universality of the play’s comic themes and this slick production directed by Ron Aldridge features a selection of seasoned comedy actors.
Aldridge, who directed Hawdon’s Don’t Dress for Dinner last June at the Mill, brings back Finty Williams, Rikki Lawton and Carla Freeman from that production, providing a loyal audience with familiar faces and farcical chaos.
Lawton, as hungover groom Bill, proves a reliable and inventive comedy performer and his pairing with Joseph Timms’ best man Tom provides some of the biggest laughs of the show. Williams’ knows exactly how to pitch the part of chambermaid Julie, as it’s so similar to her last role at the Mill. Freeman lends a naive honesty to the role of Judy, Tom’s conflicted new girlfriend.
Character development is probably not the chief aim here. Lucy Heath is fine as in the awkwardly underwritten role of bride Rachel and the facile ending seems to serve the writer far more than it does the characters. Thankfully Aldridge is an excellent farceur and the cast know how to deliver the goods.