Thursday, 29 October 2015

REVIEW - The Comedy Of Errors, National Theatre


SHAKESPEARE'S The Comedy of Errors is one of his funniest plays - full of farce, slapstick and laugh out loud humour, thus making it ideal for kids.
A pared down version is now on at the National's Temporary Theatre and it is a real joy.
It has been adapted by Ben Power who has worked his magic to create an hour-long show perfect for those aged between eight and 12.
The basic story is of two sets of identical twins who are separated from each other as youngsters during a storm.
Years later Antipholus of Syracuse and his manservant Dromio arrive in Ephesus and are immediately confused with their brothers - Antipholus of Ephesus and his manserant also called Dromio.
Not only are both sets of twins mistaken for the other by those in Ephesus, they also confuse each other - with the two Dromios coming off a bit worse for wear from their masters and Antipholus of Ephesus's wife Adriana.
Set on what looks like a tropical paradise island, it is a pacey contemporary production with the comedy ramped up to the max for the young audience.
It begins with Aegeon, father of the Antipholus brothers outlining to the audience what has happened to the families of both sets of boys.
From there it goes headlong into the story with Antipholus of Syracuse and Dromio arriving in Ephesus and immediately confusing both each other and everyone else.
There is plenty of running about as the twins try to work out what is going on, narrowly avoiding bumping into each other.
Hilariously funny, it is brilliantly put together and certainly held the attention of my 11 year old who thought it was "fantastic".

The Comedy of Errors is on at the National's Temporary Theatre, South Bank until November 6. Tickets from £8. Visit or call the box office on 020 7452 3000.  

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