Chauntecleer and Pertelotte
  • By Tim Earl
  • |
  • 22nd May 2009
  • |
  • ★★★★★

A bawdy tale of inter-species intrigue in the farmyard.Chauntecleer the rooster is accustomed to the pick of the flock, due to his amazing sexual, er … powers. When he chooses Pertelotte however, she will only oblige if they are married. Frustrated by this, he seeks out the farmer’s equally frustrated wife as his next conquest. The farmer hears of this, and conspires with Pertelotte to have their double revenge. Clearly, we’re in fantasy, or rather fable territory, but that’s not really the point. This is a jam-packed hour of huge and wacky fun, made by two major achievements.The first is the script. Using a mixture of mock-Chaucerian English and Stanley Unwin-style burbling and word-twisting, Dougie Blaxland has created an intricate masterpiece of linguistic fireworks.The second is the performance. Tim Dewberry and Annie Hemingway command and deliver over an hour of dense and intricate dialogue faultlessly and at breakneck speed. The result is a gloriously rib-tickling soup, bubbling with tasty delights.Apart from the script, there’s very little else in this production. The stage is bare apart from a simple box for the hens to roost on. Pertelotte wears a faintly comical dress, and there’s a touch of red hair-dye to suggest Chauntecleer’s coxcomb, and that’s it. But they don’t need anything else, as their superb performances are the equal of the script. Don’t miss it.

Reviews by Tim Earl

A Fistful of Snow

★★★★★

Bane

★★★★★

Oedipus

★★

4:48 Psychosis

★★★

The Silents

★★★★

The Blurb

An all-too-cocky rooster is given his comeuppance by the lovelorn hen Pertelotte in this romping farmyard fable. Based (loosely) on Chaucer's 'Canterbury Tales'. “Hugely enjoyable” Time Out.