‘A bold, different choice for Viva but a triumph that leaves the audience buzzing’


Bouncers. - Credit: Archant

A review of Viva Theatre Group’s latest production, Bouncers.


Bouncers. - Credit: Archant


Bouncers, the Viva Remix at The Brook, in Soham.

By Mike Rouse

ON a bare set, occasionally illuminated by disco lights and against the background of pounding disco anthems, four actors portray more than twenty characters.

They are cynical bouncers re-enacting what they observe on club nights, switching between a group of girls and a gang of lads, but interspersed with insights into their own lives.

Sarah Dowd-Crosby’s and Kirsten Martin’s production for Viva throbs along like the pulsating music and the four-strong cast take the audience on a roller coaster of an evening.

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Lucky Eric is the oldest and most disillusioned by what he has seen. David Tickner brings all his skill to the role delighting the audience in the campery, gripping as he tries to contain his anger at Judd’s jibes.

Judd is an aggressive young man looking for a fight and getting pleasure from needling the older man because his wife has left him.

Graham Brown has a frantic energy and physicality which contributes to some of the funniest moments of the play, but there is also a manic edginess to the scenes with Eric that gives the drama some real conflict.

John Bedford, as Les, brings a wealth of experience to the group. He has an impressive hardness and stillness conveying menace, which makes the scene when portraying a terrified youth grabbed by a man-hungry girl all the funnier.

David Moat gives Ralph a quiet but firm gentleness to balance the team of four.

The language of the play is an extraordinary mixture of the coarse and the poetic and underscoring everything is the well-chosen music, that leads into some hilarious well choreographed dance routines.

The directors are to be congratulated on such a fresh re-working of the play which has both pace and slapstick humour, but, when needed, spell binding stillness.

A bold, different choice for Viva but a triumph that leaves the audience absolutely buzzing.