2015 Todd The Barber Reviews

Daily Echo - Curtain Call

Tuesday 21st April 2015

By Ham Quentin

REVIEW: Todd the Barber, The Worthy Players, Jubilee Hall, Kings Worthy

Michael Edwards, director, writer and designer of this show, has gone back to the earliest source of the Demon Barber legend – written in weekly instalments by James Malcolm Rymer in 1846, the sort of penny dreadful that was as popular then as TV soap operas are today.

Todd (Tim Ellwood) is as compellingly horrid as ever – outwardly respectable (note the wardrobe work by Shirley Lovell and Alison Woolford), only revealing his true character with a manic laugh and uninhibited bullying of his apprentice Tobias (Maisie Flight), the boy’s face bruised by, we hope, adroit use of make-up.

When a customer is about to be “polished off”, Todd darts offstage and the famous chair performs its deadly trick to great effect.

There are not many surprises here, but some grisly humour and effective performances, which include that of Johanna Oakley, as the bereft but resourceful beloved of one victim, Kirsty Turner, a splendid Mrs Lovett, and Douglas Mackie, particularly as the unfortunate who is enslaved as the baker of her all too delicious pies.


 

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