GT Stage

Don't worry, be happy

If there's one thing we love, it's making Dickie happy.

Jeremy Kingston’s Making Dickie Happy made critics very, umm, happy when it opened at the Rosemary Branch pub in 2004. Praised for its wit and ingenuity, it uses a fictional weekend, in a Devon hotel shortly after the end of WWI, as the setting for a meeting of three well-known figures: Lord Mountbatten, Noël Coward and Agatha Christie. Now, brought to the Tristan Bates theatre, and under the same direction of Robert Gillespie, it begins the West End transfer that it had hoped for nine years ago.

Next month’s performances at the Tristan Bates Theatre will feature Phineas Pett, James Phelips and Helen Duff in the lead roles. The play examines the personal lives and public faces of this elite trio, taking as fact the speculation that Lord Mountbatten was bisexual. Mountbatten’s imminent marriage to Edwina Ashley and his relationship with a close naval chum are quipped at and quibbled about. This play may be about a retreat, but many interesting revelations are brought into light by its sharp candour.

This reboot will also introduce a long-forgotten Noël Coward song, Devon, 95 years since it was first written.

It has a script that transported even a pub’s attic to the cocktail party of 1920s Britain’s social and literary elite, and a cast that seems to be as well qualified as they are handsome. It doesn't take an Agatha Christie sleuth to work out that this is about to become a West End hit.

Tickets for ‘Making Dickie Happy’ are available here< / a>.

Words: Patrick Scullion

More from GT Stage