The madcap adventure is portrayed by just three actors, taking on no fewer than twelve characters between them in a frantic whirl of scene and on-stage costume changes. Bertie Wooster does his level best to get into trouble at every turn, but as always, Jeeves is there to rescue him and make sure that we get a happy ending for all concerned.
As Mark says: “The company was formed by (Littlehampton GP) Tim Kimber and his wife Jane (hence the TJ) back in 2007, and the first thing they put on was The Full Monty. I was the fat one in that. I have lost a lot of weight since then!
“And they have done half a dozen or so shows since then, and I have been in all of them apart from Yes, Prime Minister. The thing I like is that they are different shows, not the ones that you regularly see done in amateur productions. My background is in musical theatre. I have done lots of stuff for various companies, and for me, this provides an opportunity to do a different kind of acting. Tim tends to concentrate on plays. You don’t have the cost of the band, and the rights are less.”
Mark is delighted to see the company now establishing itself in Bognor Regis: “From the audience members’ perspective, it is a great viewing theatre, and from an actor’s perspective, certainly in terms of the big productions, you can do a lot more there than you can do at the Pavilion (in Worthing). And from the stage perspective, you can be a lot closer to the audience.”
There are just the three performers in the show: Bertie Wooster is Bertie Wooster throughout, but Tim who is playing Jeeves is a number of other characters besides. Mark who plays the butler Seppings is also a range of other characters.
“My sub-roles are people like Aunt Dahlia, who is Bertie’s aunt, and also Roderick Spode, who is the villain of the piece and a would-be dictactor. Jeeves has also got four other roles as well, and for us the challenge is to differentiate the roles.”
Though it is more complicated than that even.
The premise is that Bertie Wooster is using the others to recreate a troublesome weekend he has just had.
“And actually half the comedy is from the perceived errors that we make which are actually quite deliberate... and it is possible that there might also be some actual errors!”
Also by Phil: https://www.chichester.co.uk/author/Phil.Hewitt2