- March 14, 2020
TEN TIMES TABLE
Alan Ayckbourn’s reputation for farcical comedy remains untouched,quite a feat but perhaps not as he has penned over 70 plays of which over 40 have ended up in London’s West End. For 37 years he was artistic director of the Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough but his reputation has become international taking ten of his plays to Broadway where they garnered two Tony nominations and one Tony Award.
This is Ayckbourn at his comic best
It’s hardly surprising then that theatre impressario Bill Kenwright should choose a classic Ayckbourn as the inaugural outing for his newly formed Classic Comedy Theatre Company. And hardly surprising that this new venture has been launched after the success of Kenwright’s Agatha Christie, Classic Thriller and Classic Screen to Stage companies.
Ten Times Table is Ayckbourn at his comic best. Here he puts us in the tired ballroom of the Swan Hotel where the assembled are planning the Pendon Folk Festival, led by the excitable chairman Ray. Inevitably the assembled committee falls apart as each of the characters starts to fight for their own corner.
Kenwright also has the ability to draw a cast of actors well known for their popularity on TV’stop comedies and dramas. On this occasion they are led by Robert Daws, best know for his roles in The Royal and Poldark. Deborah Grant, from Not Going Out and Robert Duncan of Drop The Dead Donkey are joined by Elizabeth Power from Eastenders. One time Blue Peter presenter but more recently seen as Kevin in Last of The Summer wine as well as many stage roles, Mark Curry joins the cast with Gemma Oaten from Emmerdale Craig Gazey, who played the much loved Graeme Proctor in Coronation Street, completes this star studded cast.
You can certainly expect laughs form this talented comedic cast and Ayckbourn’s undoubted skill as a writer of finely honed humour.