Joe Orton’s Loot packs one hell of a punch – review

Two young friends, Hal and Dennis, stash the proceeds of a bank robbery in an occupied coffin, attempting to hide their spoils from the attentions of a psychopathic policeman, a gold-digging nurse and a grieving widower. What could possibly go wrong?

Joe Orton’s focus here is simple: make the audience laugh. The joining of both slapstick and dark humour combined into a singular package works wonderfully together.

Sam Frenchum and Calvin Demba are a delightful pairing as secret lovers and bank robbers extraordinaire (though they are delightfully bad at it). Easily bouncing off of one another to create truly hilarious moments – dark comedy at it’s finest. The part bromance, part romance is completely believable. Best of friends up to no good, who also share a secret passion: each other. Frencham’s portrayal of “the boy without a soul” who would sell his own mother to get what he wants (almost literally) was a highlight.

Related: Meet the dashing new stars of Loot: Joe Orton’s dark comedy – exclusive images

Darren Bell

Special mentions must be made for Sinéad Matthews [Fay], a linchpin of the comedy. The Queen of the one-liners with every action and line positively dripping with wit and sarcasm. Anah Rudin [Mrs Mcleavey] proving that you don’t even need to utter a single word to get the biggest laughs. This is a cast that has clearly gelled together, and it truly shows.

The set is similar to the storyline: simple and powerful. One room, one coffin, one body. Everything revolves around these. There’s no need for complicated props and intricate lighting and technology; the cast work the intimate space and simplistic set with a grace like expertise.

Intensely funny and dark in equal measure, Loot packs one hell of a punch. If you like your comedy dark and your slapstick daring: this is the play for you.

Gay Times gives Loot – 4/5

More information can be found here.

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