The Gin Chronicles: A Scottish Adventure

2016GINCHRO_AAQ

Theatre

artSpace@StMarks

Venue 125

18.30

8 – 25 August, not 21

****

 

My, what an utterly spiffing adventure!

 

The Misfits of London invite you to join them for “a vintage radio-style comedy live & direct from the 1940s”, and offer a G&T as you enter.  One company member intrigues audience members with his card tricks, while other rush around collecting their scripts, checking this, that, and the other, doing a vocal warm-up and – hang on, was that a pair of nylons I saw one young chap give to a gel…??

 

We are introduced to our actors and sound effects man and, after being coached in the art of Audience Reaction, we plunge into a thrilling adventure.  Amateur ‘tec John Jobling who, with the help of his housemaid-turned-assistant Doris, solved last year’s case of the Missing Gin Magnate now turns his powerful brain to averting the appalling prospect of a gin shortage.  Increasing numbers of lorry loads of juniper berries are disappearing, and John Jobling is hot on their trail, which begins in London, but soon leads him north to Edinburgh and on to the wilds of Scotland.

 

An eccentric cast of characters including newsboys, Hollywood stars, a landlady and her resident reindeer, and an Aussie flying ace help or hinder our gallant hero in his quest.  Half a pork pie is stolen, a sudden ceilidh erupts, Marlene Dietrich makes a surprise appearance – will John Jobling and Doris solve the mystery and find the villains before London’s supply of gin runs out???

 

It’s a marvellous performance, the tone and pace simply perfect; there is so much to see and hear I’d cheerfully go again to catch all I missed this time round.  The jokes come thick and fast, the cast switch characters and accents faster than you can say “gin”, and the sound man’s antics deserve a show to themselves.  The tone is perfect – this is how entertainment used to be: oh! for the Good Old Days when everyone clustered round the radio for the next thrilling instalment of a serial, or laughed themselves sick at a comedy show.

 

The audience were gripped from start to finish, relished their opportunities to add their vocal reactions to the drama unfolding before them and applauded loud and long at the end.  My companion was laughing uncontrollably most of the way through, and I had a Truly Splendid Time.

 

The show is selling out fast: hurry up and grab a ticket before they all go!

 

 

Mary Woodward