One Man, Two Guv’nors

I decided to be all grown up and to write my blog entry sitting on the sofa with a coffee whilst listening to music – something girly and sophisticated probably. My iPod, however, only wants to play me Alan Bennett reading Winnie-the-Pooh. I’m sure there’s some kind of message in that about my life.

Anyway in the absence of Adele I shall soldier on and blog in the eerily quiet house (while Phoebe is out eating pretend chips at preschool).
Han and I went to the NT Live screening of One Man, Two Guv’nors last night at the Showroom. My Mum and Dad recommended the experience, but I was a bit uncertain whether watching a play on a cinema screen would work. I so love live theatre, and conversely I can’t stand watching stage plays on television. It felt a bit strange for about the first thirty seconds. Pretty much from then until the end I was so absorbed I forgot I wasn’t in the theatre and mostly just fell about laughing, as did the rest of the audience. I haven’t laughed that much at any play or film for years.
The play is a comedy about a man who, spurred on by an intense desire to eat, and then by his love of Dolly, ends up with two bosses. It is essentially a farce which isn’t usually my favourite kind of comedy. But apart from the obligatory 89 year old character spilling soup and being hit in the face and knocked down the stairs a lot, I found the whole thing hilarious. Especially, of course, the inimitable James Corden.
I have always loved James Corden since I saw him in the History Boys. I think he is a wonderful comic actor and was so pleased to see him return to his real craft. It makes me rather proud to be British when I see actors of his calibre and skill. I won’t go into detail about the play – it needs to be seen. But sufficed to say I was left genuinely believing that his interactions with the audience were unscripted and off the cuff when I now have a sneaking suspicion they weren’t. That takes real skill.
I also loved the music between scene changes where every member of the cast did a musical turn, from Glockenspiel to carhorns via steel drums. Brilliant.
The whole cast were excellent, notably for me Daniel Rigby as Alan, Oliver Chris as Stanley (once I’d got over the similarities with Flashheart from Blackadder) , and Suzie Toase as Dolly.
There was even some singing and dancing so it squarely hit the transformation and dance criteria for me. Plus watching at the Showroom has the added bonus of you being able to drink wine out of plastic cups and eat ice cream while you watch. It’s win win!


  1. Jealous. Though, I did get to dance with James Cordon (weird celebrity fact of the day) when I had a bit part/was Choreography Assistant on Whatever Happened to Harold Smith, which was filmed in Sheffield. He was very sweet and surprisingly light on his feet. And does a mean hustle…


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