Putting on a production which became a classic of comedy on the BBC is always going to be risky, but Grantham Dramatic Society pulled it off splendidly on Wednesday night.
Blackadder Goes Forth was a great success. The characters became muched loved icons of British TV in the 1980s and for Grantham’s amateur dramatics group to be able to play those characters so well on its first night was a triumph.
John Skerritt, on his debut with the GDS, played Blackadder with the sarcasm and weariness the character requires. William Clamp as Baldrick, Steve Healey, as Captain Darling, and Bryan Scatchard as General Melchett all brought back fantastic memories of the original TV series - which is how it should be.
Peter Coppin stood out as Lieutenant George. At times his portrayal was spot on as the posh but dim officer.
The cast and crew got the tone of the play right as well. While very funny, the fourth in the TV series won plaudits not only for its comedy but also its poignancy in portaying life in the trenches inthe First World War. At times the actors could have been a bit louder and more ‘over the top’ with their characters which would have produced more laughs. Paul Meakin as Flashheart prompted most laughter with his larger-than-life character.
But overall this is a triumph of the trenches not to be missed. Blackadder continues at the Guildhall until Saturday. Call the box office on 01476 406158 or go to www.guildhallartscentre.com to book tickets.