Review: Round The Horne, Apollo Theatre Company, Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds, Thursday, November 10

Round The Horne

Round The Horne - Credit: Archant

It was an evening of innocent, hilarious, barely concealed filth straight from the 1960s.

The anniversary tour of Round the Horne brought two episodes of the classic radio show to the Theatre Royal stage using original scripts from writers Barry Took and Marty Feldman, and it is just as entertaining today as it was 50 years ago.

Full of double entendres and knowing winks, it is hard to believe they got away with it back then. By today’s standards it is quite tame, yet still funny in the same way that Carry On films are still funny – naughty, nostalgic and harmless.

On stage, five talented performers provide beautifully accurate portrayals of the original stars - Kenneth Williams, Kenneth Horne, Betty Marsden, Hugh Paddick and Douglas Smith – and there are plenty of visual gags for a live audience along with sound effects and everyone’s favourite characters.

There’s ‘romance’ from Charles and Fiona (yes I know you know I know), bawdy moments with J. Peasemold Gruntfuttock, camp interludes with Julian and Sandy (so bona to varda their jolly old eek) and, of course, the crowd pleasing Rambling Sid Rumpo who sings the Ballad of the Woggler’s Moulie.

The smooth voiced Julian Howard McDowell is brilliant as straight-man Kenneth Horne and Colin Elmer is both physically and vocally on point as Kenneth Williams, emulating the off-script outbursts and nods to the audience perfectly.

A healthy helping of nostalgia for an audience of...ahem...a certain age but also fabulously entertaining for any young newcomers who will still find the outrageous innuendo hilarious.

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