Le Navet Bête: A Christmas Carol

By Jess Holliland

Christmas Carol Le Navet Bete Credit: Matt Austin

Christmas Carol Le Navet Bete Credit: Matt Austin

 

Le Navet Bête are fast becoming a permanent feature in Plymouth’s theatrical landscape, their comedic faces nearly as well known in the city as Argyle Green and Beryl Cook. With their trademark style of slapstick humour, chaotic prop changes, and clever wordplay you know you’re going to get a great night for your ticket price so you always come back for the next show!

 

This is the second time that they’ve worked with the Barbican Theatre to bring the historic stage of Plymouth Athenaeum to life, and they’re definitely not struggling to fill the larger auditorium. Second night of the run and they played to a full house, they’ve already sold the majority of the tickets and the show is on until the 7th January.

We hustle and bustle to our seats, looking down at a large Christmas pudding which graces the stage and is fronted by an (ever so Christmassy) large bomb complete with timer – a Freudian reference to the annual Christmas arguments perhaps who knows. I don’t want to offer any spoilers in this review because the guys from Le Navet work hard to bring us a show full of the unexpected, the unpredictable and the hilariously inevitable. This rendition of Dickens classic is no different, it comes to mind that if the iconic Carry On cast did theatre then they’d be on the phone to Al, Matt, Nick and Dan for tips.

 

I really would like to give a special credit to the show’s lighting director Alex Best. The clever lighting was a key piece of this production, bringing in atmosphere, dimensions and emphasis that really brought the show to life. Such a rapidly transforming story with minimal set props and only 4 cast members could have been a struggle but the lighting and choreography allowed you to escape any potential awkwardness and, as ever, the Navet team helps us to embrace the inevitable set ‘foibles’ that you get in a live show with this much energy.

Christmas Carol Le Navet Bete Credit: Matt Austin

Christmas Carol Le Navet Bete Credit: Matt Austin

If “It’s behind you…” isn’t your bag, but you don’t mind an occasional bloke in a dress and a belly full of laughs then I seriously recommend you make this your Christmas show.

The show runs daily until the 7th January (excluding Christmas and Boxing day) Tickets are available from the box office at the Barbican Theatre or online here but don’t put it off because the tickets are disappearing quicker than the ghost of Jacob Marley on Christmas eve!

Red Wave Rising – Plymouth Poppies. Credit Paul Gibbins