Review: A packed Cambridge Arts Theatre sees The Comedy About A Bank Robbery
Another popular play from the very talented Mischief Theatre company, now in its third year in the West End, had the audience in stitches on Wednesday, February 20.
Boasting a stellar cast - and featuring the usual levels of relentless physical comedy and farce - the play can probably best be described as "Ocean’s Eleven meets the Marx Brothers."
A priceless diamond has been entrusted to the city bank, an institution so corrupt that even the security guards are on the take. An escaped prisoner makes it his mission to steal it.
Some of the jokes and set pieces were funny and well-worked, but I didn't find myself laughing as much as I did at The Play That Goes Wrong, Mischief Theatre's previous production, which came to Cambridge last year.
It just felt that some of the jokes were a little bit forced, although it's not a play where one could ever get bored, and the musical numbers and the car chase scenes were excellent and beautifully done.
A particularly funny moment came when two of the actors acted out a scene from Casablanca behind a sheet so only their shadows were visible.
Also, the scene where two of the actors were suspended on ropes on the back wall to create a different perspective was wonderful and extremely imaginative.
Despite my misgivings, other members of the packed audience laughed ceaselessly, and a number of scenes were enthusiastically applauded.
The story itself was satisfying and included enough twists and turns - some of which were surprising and actually quite dark - to keep the audience guessing, while the performances, as ever, were of a very high standard.
The stand-outs for me were David Coomber as Neil Cooper, Julia Frith as Caprice Freeboys, Ashley Tucker as Ruth Monaghan and Jon Trenchard, who elicited both laughter and sympathy as the put-upon Warren Slax.
Fans of Mischief Theatre's work will love this play, but for me it just wasn't quite up there with The Play That Goes Wrong.
The Comedy About A Bank Robbery is on at the Cambridge Arts Theatre until Saturday, March 2.
Tickets: £20 - £39.
The show starts at 7.45 every day, with matinee performances on the Thursdays and the Saturdays at 2.30pm.
There will be no performance on Sunday, February 24.