Time at the Bar!

Beardman production Time At The Bar was written and directed by Kieran Mellish and follows the story of The Duck’s Beak pub, whose future is uncertain. By their own admission, they need to improve or close up, promising their customers the five ‘C’s’ – comfort, company, and class, with the addition of cholera and chlamydia on disco nights.

It certainly has legs as a radio series.​

The central character is owner Gary (Kieran Mellish), who introduces the scene and the rest of the characters – almost too many for a show running to just fifty minutes. His manager Darren lacks confidence, his son is hopeless and his wife a shambolic alcoholic. Gary does get help from his daughter Claire but, when you add her egotistical sex-mad boyfriend Tristan (a wannabe pop star), the plot thickens. 

The story takes off when the only hope for the pub to thrive is through a review from the local newspaper – whose journalist they collectively hope to impress. Rosie Hague, Joseph Thomas, Ellie Shields, Theo Jewitt, Thomas Hampton and Abi Owoseje complete the line up.

With laughs along the way we get a share of music, slapstick and clever characterisation, skilfully written with good comic timing. They manage the small stage space well and work well together. Timing is important here and the hard work by the company has paid off with precision. 

They seem to enjoy the experience too and taking this original college play to the Fringe shows company potential. They are able to capture the characters – all stereotypes of course but, given the time restrictions, admirably done. Mellish in particular keeps it all together and has a hint of early Ricky Gervais in his mannerisms but, given the work in bringing this to the stage, he shows great promise. Maybe not a TV sitcom this year, but it certainly has legs as a radio series.

Reviews by John Murray

Assembly Checkpoint

Arlene! The Glitz. The Glamour. The Gossip.

★★★★
theSpace @ Symposium Hall

The Joni Mitchell Story

★★★★
theSpace @ Symposium Hall

The James Taylor Story

★★★★
Gilded Balloon Teviot

Barry Cryer and Ronnie Golden: Just the Two at Six

★★★★
Greenside @ Infirmary Street

Frigid: A Musical Worth Melting For

★★★★
theSpace @ Symposium Hall

Best of the West End

★★★★

Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now

Performances

Location

The Blurb

Welcome to The Duck's Beak! This struggling Kentish pub is where you'll meet Gary the landlord as he attempts to strike order among the chaos on the most important day in the pub's history. After a phone call from the local paper, Gary is forced to employ his alcoholic wife and moronic son in order to impress a reviewer and restore the soiled reputation of The Duck's Beak. Throw into the mix Gary's daughter Claire, his assistant manager Darren and Claire's egomaniac boyfriend Tristan and it's going to be a hard day's work.

Most Popular See More

The Book of Mormon

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Dear Evan Hansen

From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Hairspray

From £21.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Wicked

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Come From Away

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Mary Poppins

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets