Drayton Players have another success on their hands with "The Boy Friend".
Deidre Jones, the director, suggested that they chose "The Boy Friend" because the Players had
many talented teenagers, some of whom came to take part in "My Fair Lady" and had stayed.
It was an excellent choice for their well-honed acting, singing and dancing skills.
It is Kate Green who takes on the lead character of Polly Browne, who is studying at Madame
Dubonnet's Finishing School in Nice. Polly is a role that Julie Andrews played many years ago
and Kate sings, dances and acts the part superbly. Polly has led a very sheltered life and invents
a boy friend to fit in with her flapper class mates.
It is obvious from the very start that the era is the 1920's, from the striped blazers, straw hats and
long necklaces. Very soon we see Bobby (played by Jason Green) and his partner performing an
When Stephen Hosking appears on stage as the handsome English messenger delivering a dress
to Polly, there is obviously immediate chemistry between him and Polly. However, he does not
immediately tell Polly who he is.
There are a number of very lively chorus numbers and the costumes throughout are excellent.
For example, the beachwear in Act 2 is as distracting as you would expect of 1920's beachwear.
There are some pastiche characters such as Lord Brockhurst, who has a lustful eye and his wife,
Lady Brockhurst- "the dragon". Georgia Alison played the flirtatious Mme Dubonnet well and the
duet with Peter Jackson as Percy Browne was excellent.
When Polly and the messenger, whose name we eventually find out is Tony, again meet up in
Act 2 they sing a romantic duet "All we want is a room in Bloomsbury" and it is obvious that both
have strong tuneful voices.
Although the story line is predictable, there are one or two surprises, such as what happens when
the gendarme appears.
Highlights in the third act included Anton King as Lord Brockhurst singing "It is never too late to
fall in love" and Pepe and Lolita's very acrobatic Carnival Tango. In fact, throughout the show the
dancing is lively and the whole production is of professional standard.
Unfortunately, the cast is too numerous to mention them all. It was good to see such a wide range
of ages of cast members on stage. They must have had great fun throughout rehearsals ( learning
the Charleston, for example), but have worked hard to pull off such a polished performance.
Do try to see this musical, but make sure you get there early, as it is popular and although there is
a large car park, it was nearly full 15 minutes before the performance.
Arthur Dangerfield , www.Dailyinfo.co.uk 16/02/07