Little Theatre Company

Live theatre in the heart of Burton upon Trent

Fur Coat and No Knickers (LTC's 100th Production)

by Mike Harding

Performed: June 2015

Fur Coat and No Knickers (LTC's 100th Production) by Mike Harding

Review by Caroline Kay - Burton Mail

If A theatre company is going to commemorate its 100th production it has got to be done with style and panache – and Little Theatre Company has done just that.

Not only is Fur Coat and No Knickers its centenary show, it is also the first play the group performed at the Brewhouse arts centre way back in 1991 – and one which I originally missed.

I had tickets for the Saturday matinee production but had left my theatre fate the hands of someone I trusted to drive me back from East Anglia in time for the play. Needless to say we didn't get back in time and so I have had to wait 24 years to see the show - and it was worth every second.

Written by Mike Harding, Fur Coat and No Knickers is a riotous romp of a comedy following the wedding of working class Deidre Ollerenshaw (Caitlin Pritchard) to middle class (or many would say upper working class) Mark Greenhalgh (Tim Robinson).

Meticulously directed by John Bowness, nothing is left to chance and the success of this show really is in the detail.

Deidre's is joined in celebrating her marriage with her staunch Catholic mother Edith (Elaine Pritchard, yes mother and daughter are actually playing mother and daughter), her facist father Harry (Mark Pearson); her brothers Peter (Alec Tomlinson) and Kevin (Daniel Tunks), and her granddad Nip (Mike Mear).

Throw all these characters into a melting pot with a priest who likes a drop of the hard stuff and soon-to-be in-laws who have their own issues – including diesel syphoning and 47 American airmen - and you have a show which had me crying with laughter.

The comedy timing throughout is perfect and Mike Mear's portrayal of the randy granddad is magnificent. Harding has written fabulous lines for this character and, along with Father Finbar Molloy (Matt Bancroft), the pair are positively side-splittingly hilarious.

Little Theatre Company has triumphed with this centenary production and I doff my cap to say 'here's to the next 100'.


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