From May 29th to June 16th Mercurius will be performing Anton Chekhov's Vaudevilles at the Brockley Jack Studio Theatre. A collection of the comic vaudeville sketches that Chekhov wrote for satirical magazines and revues, adapted and translated by Michael Frayn.
These classics of the comic theatre are full of energy, invention, and splendidly magnified performances: a famous writer driven to desperate acts by an over zealous fan; tricks with mustard played on faithful retainers; a widow's mourning quickly overturned; the pomposity of an Inspector General deflated by a cart driver; a proposal breaking into a furious argument at every turn; and a husband never quite managing to give the speech he's been told to.
Mercurius was set up in 2011 by a group of four like-minded theatre practitioners who want to create theatre that inspires them, from new writing to neglected classics. Anton Chekhov's Vaudevilles leapt out as a fantastic piece of work that subverts common conceptions of Chekhov's writing style and showcases his razor sharp wit and sense of comic absurdity.
The cast includes Tom Barratt, Jeremy Booth, Matthew Forsythe, Amy Hydes and Oliver Lavery, and is directed by Jenny Eastop.