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Fangs ain't what they used to be

Dracula the Bloody Truth: Priory Theatre, Kenilworth, to September 14. If you are planning to go to the Priory to see a stage version of the Hammer horror films which were popular in the 50s and 60s then you are in for a disappointment. However, if you enjoy a good spoof that is a delicious cocktail of pantomime, Monty Python, slapstick and ‘Plays that go wrong’, then you are in for a real treat. Amazingly, the cast comprises just five actors, who with the help of some frantic scene and costume changes, manage to perform a variety of male and female parts. The actors were convincing and immensely versatile and have managed to successfully master the extremely difficult task of getting right the things that are supposed to look as though they’ve gone wrong!! The production was well narrated Gerry Hudson as Van Helsing, a Professor who claimed that the Dracula novel was not fiction but fact and was based on something that actually happened to him. The performance therefore was his opportunity to put the record straight! The play is not only a spoof of a famous horror story but also a lovely send up of bad physical theatre. The performance was very well received by the audience but could have perhaps benefited from even more audience participation There was a really neat song and dance routine near the end which further showcased the versatility of the performers. All in all an extremely enjoyable evening which will probably appeal to all age groups including those not familiar with the original Dracula story. By the way, if you are fortunate to sit on the front row you could well be in for a surprise! In between all the laughs I couldn’t help but wonder what Bram Stoker the author of the original book in 1897 would make of it all!

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