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Thelma has to wait to go through the pearly gates
A star-studded cast successfully delivers a sparkling gag-filled comedy play in the time-honoured style of British seaside humour. The stellar line-up of Right Place, Wrong Time includes Tommy Cannon of hit comedy duo Cannon and Ball fame and recent Emmerdale recruit, Crissy Rock, who previously starred in Benidorm and I'm A Celebrity, and stand-up comic Billy Pearce. Together with Leah Bell, who co-wrote the play with Crissy and also directs, and actor Paul Dunn, they produce an irreverent look at the subject of death. This musical comedy, which also features an original score by Mike Redway, enjoyed a seemingly sell-out performance at the Lichfield Garrick theatre in Staffordshire as part of a UK tour.
Produced by Entertainment Unlimited, Right Place, Wrong Time is largely centred around the late Thelma Henderson, wonderfully played by Leah, who turns up at the Pearly Gates having been run over by a number 17 bus, only to be told her name is not on the list and she can't go in. So, she hangs around the café owned by former school pal Billy Blenkinsop, who she's had a crush on since childhood, while she waits for her turn. At the same time, Billy, splendidly portrayed by his real-life namesake, has been all-too-hurriedly swept to the altar by the newly widowed and larger-than-life Betty Wilson (Crissy), whose husband met his fate at the 'hands' of the same number 17 bus. While all this is going on, Albert Blunderstone (Tommy) leaves his exile in Spain to search for the proceeds of a bank robbery which he committed with Betty's late husband some years earlier.
Add to the mix neighbouring undertaker Tristran (Paul), who dreams of joining the 'lady boys' of Bangkok, and you have all the ingredients required for a riotous evening. Formerly called 'Seriously Dead', Right Place, Wrong Time was written by Leah Bell and Crissy Rock after they shared long car journeys while touring together in hit comedy play Dirty Dusting. Although not to be confused with the full-blown musical of the likes of My Fair Lady or Les Miserables, singer/songwriter Mike Redway does produce some nice little comedy ditties, together with a full-on romantic number, which demonstrate that Billy has a singing voice to match his undoubted comic delivery.
Comedy legends Tommy Cannon (left) and Billy Pearce
The play is recommended for over 16s, partly due to a smattering of sexual 'Blackpool postcard' innuendo, but also the occasional four-letter word. But, judging by the age of the audience at the Lichfield Garrick that was never going to be an issue!
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