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A Perfect World review Merlin Theatre Ecos Amphitheatre, Frome – ‘riotous open-air parody’

Miracle Theatre's A Perfect World. Photo: Kirstin Prisk
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Intrepid Cornwall-based open-air touring company Miracle Theatre is marking its 40th anniversary with this trademark lampoon by founder/director Bill Scott of famous works of fiction.

Its recent production of Flann O’Brien’s esoteric Irish comedy The Third Policeman, played for much of the time on bicycles, gave a flavour of the company’s approach, and this time it is sending up the catalogue of Lost World novels, particularly those with a Utopian theme. Titled A Perfect World it fits the company’s Cornish home like a glove.

Continuing Miracle Theatre’s tradition of producing small-scale shows dealing with epic themes, Rose McPhilemy’s spirited young explorer leads us on a comic expedition to a remote paradise of seemingly contented and peace-loving people.

Jude Munden’s monolithic set and Tom Adams’ jazzy score, contribute stylishly to the lush atmosphere, but it wouldn’t be a Miracle comedy if matters didn’t get rapidly, and hilariously, out of hand.

McPhilemy gives a lively account of being a woman in a man’s world and the remaining four actors have great fun doubling the ragtag band of explorers with the innocent locals, magnificently costumed by Munden in woven bell dresses and rope hats.

Miracle Theatre says it has given 3,000 performances to 450,000 people in 500-plus locations since 1979, and it is some feat that A Perfect Wold is the company’s 31st piece of new writing.

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Verdict
Riotous open-air parody by the intrepid Cornwall-based company
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