On the Razzle


March – Wick News

The first drama production on the new Barn is going to be Tom Stoppard’s On the Razzle, in the second half of September.


Razzle is a farcical romp, set in the turn-of-the-century Vienna, as two down-trodden grocery clerks [Wweinberl and Christopher ] escape from behind the counterr in search of wild adventure in the big city.

Phil Balding [Weinberl] &  Judith Berrill [Christopher]
The original story s the one that inspired The Matchmaker and Hello Dolly. Stoppard stays closer to the originall, but fills it with dazzling wit, bags of action, and frantic pace.

Wick held a company reading of the play [about four years ago!] and it was very much enjoyed.

The play was a great success at the National Theatre in the early 1980s, when Felicity Kendell played the ‘breeches’ part of Christopher, the runaway lad from the grocery shop. It has not been performed a great deal on the commercial theatre circuit, because it needs a pretty large cast. But it presents great opportunities to amateur companies.

The production is being put on jointly with the Southwick Players.

We haven’t combined forces wth the Players since Tom Jones in 1983 but the committee felt this would be a fitting way to begin life in the new theatre and the new workshop building.

The two companies have jointly invited Bob Ryder to direct the show. Production managers from each company [Betty Dawes and Gerry Lane] will support him, with the costs and responsibilities being shared between them.

A cast of 19 played 27 characters including the horse ‘lightning’

Sharon Watts & Vanessa Strong were ‘Lightning’
Curtain call

A separate financial account will be set up managed by Ralph Dawes and Maureen Ogden [Southwick Plyer’s Treasurer]. The technical crew will be decided upon at a later stage.

This is going to be a large undertaking, making full use of all our technical resources and showing off what the new stage and equipment is cpable of. It is an exciting project – and the co-operation with the Southwick Players will help us develop new ways of working with the facilities in the Barn and the new workshops and with joint approaches to marketing and supporting our shows.

[The cast was supported by a 30 strong off-stage crew]

Vienna store sketch
Vienna store on set


The production was adjudicated as part of the Brighton & Hove Arts Council Full Length Drama Competition. And awarded ‘Best Stage Setting’.