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Silchester Players - Millennium Madness

A revue produced by Jill Hutchins, on 13th, 14th, 20th and 21st October 2000.

This is an evening of sketches and music, drawing from (among others) Monty Python, Victoria Wood, the Two Ronnies and Pam Ayres, with musical interludes.

From the Newbury Weekly News.

Fun-filled mayhem!

SILCHESTER PLAYERS' 'MILLENNIUM MADNESS', at Silchester village hall, on October 14, 15, 21 and 22

It's been a while since we last attended a Silchester Players production, and it was good to find the group as warm and inviting as ever. 'Millennium Madness' was a revue which drew on the group's great strength in light comedy: a collection of some 30 sketches, news reports, monologues, and musical items, paying tribute to the major landmarks of the last thousand years.

Under the capable direction of Kevin Belcher, who also narrated much of the show, and his assistant Jill Hutchins, the revue provided an opportunity for the large cast to display their talents.

It was particularly encouraging to see so many youngsters involved in both the music and the comedy, and Silchester clearly has a number of young stars in the making.

Among the adult cast members, there were some very memorable performances: Brian Gillett and Nick Lock as Michelangelo and the Pope, arguing over the kangaroos in the 'Last Supper'; Gary Belcher and Lyn Davies comparing the vital differences between the sexes; the Belcher brothers' hilarious drunks; Keith Graham's wicked monologue, 'Albert and the Condom' (funny, I don't remember that one being in the Stanley Holloway repertoire!); and Beryl Oliver and Jodi Singfield's charming 'Mirror Mime'.

The corny news items drew many a groan from the audience, and I also enjoyed the 'Legionnaires' and the Two Ronnies classic 'Four Candles', particularly commendable since the latter involves constructing a whole hardware shop on stage just for a three-minute sketch.

The younger cast also performed with gusto. Kim Jones, Liam Titley, Nicola Brett, and David Clitheroe showed particular versatility, while young Nicholas Hutchins gave us a lively rendering of 'Shake, Rattle and Roll', supported by an enthusiastic dance troupe. The other musical dance items, including 'Scarborough Fair' and 'Early One Morning', were neatly choreographed by Pam Armstrong and accompanied by Tony Oliver.

It was just a shame there wasn't a little more music; a futuristic cast medley in place of the final 'Star Struck' sketch would have rounded off the programme perfectly. Apart from that small point, congratulations are due to Silchester Players for a fun-filled evening.