The Cambridge University Amateur Dramatic Club has failed to hit the nail on the mark with their latest show
This is a show which feels like a failed improvised comedy.
The premise of their show is that one day the poet Guillaume Apollinaire wakes up to find that the Mona Lisa has appeared in his apartment, after it was stolen from the Louvre in 1911. Everyone is obviously confused about how it could have appeared there and this eventually leads to him and his friend Pablo Picasso being arrested and interrogated by the French police.
To put it bluntly, the jokes are not funny but obvious and out-dated. Even their attempts to acknowledge their bad puns fail to cause a stir of laughter. This isn’t helped by the bizarre role of Will Dalrymple who keeps interrupting the story as he comes out to impersonate different literary characters such as James Joyce or Ernest Hemingway at different points in the show. These impersonations are neither accurate nor funny and it feels more like the actors are acting out their own inside jokes onstage rather than performing humour which everybody can understand and enjoy.
The plot is ludicrous but that could have been forgiven if the whole story didn’t seem to drag on, long-winded. There are many times that a monologue seems to be included for no reason other than to increase the length of the show, neither adding humour nor driving the plot along. This is most prominent during the interrogation of Guillaume, as the policeman digresses several times away from the story and rants on about things that seem irrelevant.
The saving grace is Natalie Reeve who plays the female French police officer. She is the only one who has mastered the art of comic timing and whenever she enters, the energy and life goes back into the play.
This is a show which feels like a failed improvised comedy. The players need to work on understanding the genre of a farce in order to bring life and humour to this show.