Dirty Rotten Scoundrels review - November 2014

If this show were a drink it would most certainly be a cool glass of Champagne!

They say that the third time is a charm, and this was certainly the case for my latest visit to the Scoundrels, who continue to scheme night after night at the Savoy Theatre!

Based on the 1980’s film of the same name starring Steve Martin and Michael Caine, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels is musical romp through the lives of rascals tricking rich ladies out of their assets each summer on the French Riviera. The concept is not the most complex, but the narrative is amusing and does allow the audience a few surprises.

As you may have read from my previous notes on the show, this production by Jeffrey Lane and David Yazbeks is pretty classy, so it was only fitting that guests attending the second press night of this show were treated to some champagne. On taking a few sips I realised that Dirty Rotten Scoundrels is much like a cool glass of champers; its classy and bubbly without being too complex. Yes, the show definitely has a certain fizz.

Original cast members Robert Lindsay and Katherine Kingsley were on form as ever as trickster Laurence Jamieson and American “Soap Queen” Christine Colgate. Lindsay brings a certain knowing smirk and admirable sassiness to his role, making it that bit more believable and entertaining for the audience. Similarly Kingsley delivers a truly hilarious performance, bringing the house down with “Love Is My Legs.” Queen Kingsley truly is the star of this show.

Original cast member Lizzie Connelly also deserves an honourable mention for her small but fantastic role as Joleen, gaining some of the best laughs in the first act! Ye-ha!

Last night was all about seeing the new cast in action and I have to say Bonnie Langford was ON FORM as Muriel Eubanks (which I must say is a great role for any mature actress to land) proving her skills as a true triple threat. Alex Gaumond was quite the joy as fraudster Freddie, bringing a strong vocal performance and a very different dynamic to the scoundrel relationship than Rufus Hound. Whilst hound was perhaps cheekier, Gaumond brings a lovely level of naivety to Freddie, making it very plausible that Laurence would take him under his wing.

Gary Wilmot is a very different Andre than the suave John Marquez, bringing a new dynamic to his relationship with Laurence and indeed Muriel. Here Wilmot’s portrayal is sweet and sincere, making his dalliance with Ms Eubanks almost hear warming.

Jerry Mitchell’s choreography brings the show to life and, coupled with Peter McKintosh’s classic set and costume designs and a few of David Yazbek’s stand out musical numbers, makes the show a delight to watch.

I had a fabulous third date with the Scoundrels, one of the most simplistically enjoyable productions in the West End at the moment. If you are game for a bit of a cheeky laugh and like a good, classic style musical, then you should see this show.

Grand Guignol review London 2014
19 November 2014, Savoy Theatre