Harburn Village Hall - Drama Archive


Entering the Harburn Hall on 12th April we realised that we were not about to be offered a routine play by the Harburn Players. Gone were the neat rows of seats. In their place were tables, set cabaret style, while the program - a joint collaboration welcomed us in initially sombre funereal mood , opening out to a Clouseau like detective image. Joe Orton’s non politically correct play from 1965 initially shocked audiences but were the Harburn Players going to be able to make an impression on the sophisticated Harburn audience used to nightly servings of Graham Norton and Little Britain? We were not to be disappointed.

Although “Loot” has lost its ability to shock, the players managed to maintain a breathtaking pace throughout. Its shocking dialogue was transformed into an up to date comedy tour de force. By judicious cutting Andrew Leslie managed to avoid prosecution by a modern day Truscott, while under his direction the actors excelled themselves and had the audience in constant laughter. With a cast of only six the actors made a superhuman effort and produced what must be their best ever production. Stand out dialogue was between Mcleavey the grieving widower (Colin Mitchell) and Truscott the undercover detective (Jeff Robinson). However the initial scene was well set by Fay the nurse (Linda McDonald) and McLeavy. The duo of robbers Hal the unbelievably truthful Catholic son (Gordon Clarke) and Dennis the promiscuous undertaker (Robbie McDonald) supplied a fine supporting roll, while Meadows the typical British copper (George Stott) gave a Dixon of Dock Green boost to the final denouement.

The actors were well supported by the unsung heroes of stage manager Morag Stott, props mistress Joanna Pearce, lighting Bob Wells and joint set design of Allan McLaughlan and Andy Cuthbertson. The audience were supplied with sausage rolls and sandwiches at the interval prepared by Isobel McChesney. Our thanks must go to Andrew Leslie for a memorable evening and my advice to our readers is “Don’t miss it!”. For those who have, perhaps Andrew will arrange a “Director’s Cut” for an invited audience!

poster for loot



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loot poster