One Man, Two Guvnors
Richard Bean’s gag-filled script gives little indication that
rollicking new comedy One Man, Two Guvnors is actually an updating of Italian playwright
Goldoni’s mid-18th century commedia dell’artee work.
The action is
transposed to seaside Brighton in 1963, where, unbeknownst to each other,
both public school toff Stanley (hilarious Oliver Chris) and his girlfriend
(cross-dressed as her gangster twin brother whom he’s just killed) are holed
up in the Cricketers’ Arms.
With a skiffle group, a buxom bookkeeper, a posturing would-be thespian and
Tom Edden’s doddery waiter (he’s 87 and it’s his first day at work) thrown
into the mix of farce and slapstick, Nicholas Hytner’s production of One Man, Two Guvnors whizzes
And at the heart of it, James Corden’s increasingly flustered,
food-fixated Francis juggles two masters, his ravenous appetite – and a
delighted audience – to absolute perfection.
Lyttelton at the National, South Bank, SE1 9PX
020 7452 3000
Until September 19
£12 – £45.00
– Louise Kingsley