ALAN Bennett’s seaside farce Habeas Corpus is next up for the Bear Pit Theatre in Stratford.
Set in the late 1960s, it features all the ingredients of a classic but surreal farce, spiced with the warmth and humanity of Bennett’s razor-sharp wit.
Dr and Mrs Wicksteed, his sister Connie, their hypochondriac son Dennis, and Connie’s long-term fiancé Canon Throbbing, live in Hove – a seaside town as yet untouched by the Permissive Society.
But beneath the surface hidden desires are bubbling, and the arrival of Lady Rumpers from the colonies, her gorgeous daughter Felicity, and, coincidentally, Sir Percy Shorter, the president of the British Medical Association, prove a combustible mixture.
However, it’s Mr Shanks, a ‘falsies’ fitter from Leatherhead and keen to provide a professional service to his customers, who triggers the explosion, and a positive tsunami of mistaken identities and surging passions ensues.
The production, directed by Vanessa Comer, runs at the Rother Street theatre from March 16 to 24.
Visit www.thebearpit.org.uk for tickets and full performance details.