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Fawlty Towers Play review | A hilarious return to Torquay

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Step aside, Ministry of Silly Walks! John Cleese's iconic sitcom, Fawlty Towers, has invaded West End's Apollo Theatre in a side-splitting stage adaptation. While some might scoff at revisiting a television classic, Fawlty Towers play proves that perfectly crafted chaos transcends the screen.

Homage to a British comedy classic

Gone are the worries of a lackluster adaptation. Cleese himself has taken the reins, stitching together three beloved episodes – "The Hotel Inspector", "The Germans", and the ever-delightful "Communication Problems" – into a seamless theatrical experience. The result? A laugh-a-minute rollercoaster ride through the disastrous world of Fawlty Towers.

Director Caroline Jay Ranger understands the assignment. The production is slick and fast-paced, with the show's iconic theme music getting a well-deserved pre-show ovation. But more importantly, Ranger captures the essence of the series: a delightful blend of farce and witty dialogue.

And what’s a play without a stellar cast. Adam Jackson-Smith steps into Basil Fawlty's shoes with remarkable ease. He captures Cleese's signature physicality and simmering frustration perfectly, making you wonder if they haven't unearthed a time-traveling version of the comedic genius himself. Anna-Jane Casey embodies Sybil Fawlty, complete with her dramatic pronouncements and machine-gun laugh (though a pesky toe injury keeps her off-stage for the latter half).

The supporting cast is equally impressive. Victoria Fox channels Connie Booth's Polly with uncanny accuracy, while Rachel Izen's demanding Mrs. Richards is a scene-stealer. Special mention goes to Hemi Yeroham's endearingly bewildered Manuel, whose mangled attempts at English provide some of the show's biggest laughs.

Sure, there's no groundbreaking new material here. But that's precisely the beauty of Fawlty Towers play. It's a nostalgic trip back to Torquay, a chance to witness these iconic characters brought to life in a new medium. Is it "the funniest show in town" as some other reviewers claim? That's a matter of taste. But one thing's for sure: Fawlty Towers play is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser, leaving you wanting more – much more, just like Cleese himself playfully hints at in the program. So, pack your metaphorical suitcases and prepare for a side-splitting stay at Fawlty Towers!

Fawlty Towers play review | What the critics think

"I’m pleased to report that this genial condensing of three episodes delivers a hugely entertaining blast of unadorned nostalgia."
Clive Davis, The Times

"John Cleese has turned his classic BBC sitcom Fawlty Towers into a fantastic theatre farce in London's West End."
Neil Norman, Daily Express

"The slickness of Cleese’s new script is crucial, leaving no suggestion of much-loved material simply being dumped on a stage and left to fend for itself."
Fiona Mountford, i News

How to buy Fawlty Towers play tickets in London?

Looking for budget-friendly tickets for Fawlty Towers play in London? Book your tickets online! Enjoy last-minute availability, choose your seats using the Apollo Theatre seating plan, and skip the queues by booking at your convenience.

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