Rupert Rigsby is the moth-eaten landlord of a seedy lodging house in a nameless northern town. Among his tenants are Alan, Philip and Ruth. Alan and Philip provide the focus for Rigsby’s many prejudices, while Ruth is his main object of desire.
Sale & Altrincham Messenger’s Review by Rick Bowen
Rising to the challenge
I have had a rubbish week, the commute from hell followed by the indignity of slipping on ice outside my son’s school. Luckily he didn’t see me end up on my backside, so I’m still, in his eyes, a cool dad. So, I went to the theatre on Tuesday night searching for a pick me up – no pun intended – and found it in Altrincham Garrick’s production of Eric Chappell’s sublime comedy, Rising Damp. A script containing some drop dead brilliant one liners is complemented by some fine acting from the strongest ensemble to grace the Barrington Road playhouse this season. The four strong cast have a look of their TV alter egos but what is really important, what is really impressive is the comic timing displayed by Tony Turner (Rigsby), Andrew Higson (Alan), Jason Cole (Philip) and Julie Cunningham who plays the breathy flirt, Miss Jones. The scene in which Rigsby tries to seduce the sultry spinster is comedy gold and even a bloke sat near me who had spent most of the evening with a face like a busted shoe, started laughing. The whole production is a testament to the considerable skills of director Bill Platt who obviously has a natural gift for comedy. Rising Damp was, for me, just what the doctor ordered as Trafford shivers its way into December. You simply must not miss this laugh out loud production. This is the best play of the season so far and the late, great Leonard Rossiter, who immortalised the miserly Rigsby on the small screen, would have been proud of all concerned. Star Rating ★★★★★
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