behind the scenes to talk to
you shouldn't miss!
on the boards:
Eddie Izzard has been forging a productive career as
a stage actor, in plays as diverse as Mamet's The Cryptogram,
the title role in Lenny (about another comic, Lenny
Bruce) and most recently the now Broadway-bound revival of
Peter Nichols' A Day in the Death of Joe Egg
Jack Dee, Frank Skinner and Sean Hughes
variously did stints in Art - before the League
of Gentlemen, all appearing together, closed the show
earlier this month
Dawn French returns to the theatrical stage at the
Apollo in a one-woman play, My Brilliant Divorce, opening
on 24 February
Davies Unofficial site
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content of external sites)
Auntie and Me
taking to the boards in plays is nothing new (see our Fact File
alongside); but the joy and surprise of seeing Alan Davies
in his straight stage debut in this mordantly, bleakly funny play
is to realise just how completely natural he is.
Davies plays one
of nature's loners and losers, a bank clerk who has no friends or
doleful puppy dog that is his natural person stands him in good
But he has a sense
of duty when it comes to an ageing aunt he's not seen for 30 years
which propels him to drop everything and travel 200 miles to visit
her when he receives a letter from her saying that she is dying.
The only problem
is that when he arrives, she stubbornly refuses to die.
As he patiently
at first, and then increasingly impatiently, waits for her to pop
her clogs, he exasperatedly tells her: "I'm worried about
your health; it seems to be improving".
knits compulsively: "This knitting of yours," he
enquires of her, "Is it a long-term project?"
But just when Morris
Panych's play seems like it is going to consist entirely of
variations on one joke, it delves beneath its apparently slight
surface to deliver something deeper and darker about the nature
of loneliness and companionship, while also revealing Davies's character's
deeply dysfunctional upbringing.
The doleful puppy
dog that is his natural persona - his face topped by that trademark
mop of curly dark hair - stands him in good stead for this affecting
too, is Margaret Tyzack in the virtually silent role of the
Auntie and Me plays at the Wyndham's
Theatre, Charing Cross Road WC2. Tel: 020 7369 1736