Horrible Histories - Barmy Britain
A stage adaptation from the books of the same name, Horrible Histories in London is presented by The Birmingham Stage Company and returns to the West End following two seasons in 2012.
"Heartily enjoyable and loudly appreciated" Time Out
Set in loathsome London Horrible Histories - Barmy Britain is the history of Britain with the nasty bits left in! Having been presented in London earlier this year, the orignal 'Part One' Horrible Histories - Barmy Britain returns to the Garrick Theatre for special daytime performances which will be followed from 26 September 2013 of the Premiere of 'Part Two'!.
"A sharp 60 minutes through centuries of our island's barminess!" The London Evening Standard
PART ONE: Have you ever wondered why the Romans never won MasterChef? What if a Viking moved in next door? Would you lose your heart or head to horrible Henry? Will Parliament escape gunpowder Guy? Enrol yourself at Georgian Crime School, dare to dance the Tyburn jig and find out what a baby farmer did!
PART TWO: Can you beat battling Boudicca? Has William Wallace met his match? Can evil Elizabeth entertain England? Will King Charles keep his head? Would you stand and deliver to dastardly Dick Turpin? Escape the clutches of Burke and Hare and move to the groove with party Queen Victoria!
"Perfectly horrid and my daughter loved it!" The Daily Mail
The cast for Barmy Britain Part One features Alison Fitzjohn and Neal Foster while the cast for Part Two features Lauryn Redding and Anthony Spargo. Based on the children's books by Terry Deary and adapted for the stage by Neal Foster and Ciaran McConville, directed by Neal Foster with designs by Jackie Trousale, lighting by Jason Taylor and sound by Nick Sagar.
"A breathlessly orchestrated hour of 'edutainment' packaged as madcap tomfoolery and rumbustious songs" The Metro
"Neal Foster's pacey production is at the Garrick in the daytime, appealing to families at weekends and school parties during the week. If lessons were always like this, kids would be queueing up at the school gates every morning. Then again, their teachers would soon be dead on their feet... Some of the parodies will go over the heads of the target audience (age 6 and up). But you don't have to know Who Wants to be a Millionaire? to enjoy the profusion of funny facts that the format enables as Guy Fawkes phones a friend who happens to be Robert Catesby. No need to have seen Relocation, Relocation to understand the Norse invasion sketch: 'You Canute be serious!' Unless you're as up-to-speed on the past as Dr David Starkey, there's plenty here that we can all relish being reminded about. ... Britain's barmy history is satirised in style, yet in an acute coda we are reminded that the present day (drone warfare, City madness and Xbox violence) ain't so pretty either. So we end up with a bit of pointed panto and a bit of Oh! What a Lovely War. This is light info-tainment at its best." The Times
"Roman culinary habits get a Masterchef makeover in Birmingham Stage Company's theatrical romp, which also features the Vikings invading in a bloody version of Relocation, Relocation and Field Marshal Haig getting fired on the final of The Apprentice for failing to win the task: the Battle of the Somme... This may not be sophisticated or particularly imaginative theatre (although sound designer Nick Sagar delivers the squelchiest and most vomit-inducing sound effects on the London stage), but it's pretty good entertainment if you are 10 years old or like your theatre very broad, high-energy and in pantomime mould; there are even singalongs... The TV theme can be a little wearing, and this is little more than a low-budget version of one of many recent TV spin-offs - from Fireman Sam to Peppa Pig. But it does what it does with verve and jollity, and ends on a serious note as it points out that it's unlikely that those who come after us will think we are any less barmy than we do those who came before." The Guardian
"One of the most enchanting sounds is surely that of children's laughter. Its delightful cadences are much in evidence at a Garrick Theatre filled with little 'uns (average age around seven) all rocking with mirth at a new stage version by Terry Deary, Neal Foster and Ciaran McConville of Deary's popular satirical books on British history. And if proof was ever needed that children possess a ghoulish delight in the brutal side of life then this hilarious show is it. The excellent Birmingham Stage Company takes an hour-long stroll through 2,000 years of invasions from Nasty Romans and Beastly Vikings to head-chopping Tudors, Guy Fawkes and his gunpowder and beyond... The two story-tellers, not the ones from the BBC show... raid a huge wicker dressing-up box on the stage. Employing the quickest of changes they skip through the centuries... Director Neal Foster keeps the pace cracking along and it is clearly designed to stay within the parameters of children's attentiveness. Horrible Histories brings the often bloody story of Britain throbbingly alive. Marvellous stuff." The Daily Express
Horrible Histories in London at the Garrick Theatre previewed from 14 February 2012, opened 24 February 2012 and closed on 1 September 2012. It returns from 27 October 2012 to 6 January 2013.