Venue Cymru was roaring with laughter last night during The Full Monty, the play based on the hit movie!
In 1997, a British film about six out of work Sheffield steelworkers with nothing to lose took the world by storm.
And now they’re back, live on stage. Only this time, for them, it really is… The Full Monty. Simon Beaufoy, the Oscar-winning screenwriter, has gone back to Sheffield where it all started to rediscover the men, the women, the heartache and the hilarity of a city on the dole.
The Full Monty is a Hit at Venue Cymru
The theatre was packed on opening night and not just with woman, as you may have suspected, but many of them had brought their husbands/boyfriends along with them for a night of entertainment.
There was an atmosphere of excitement as the clock ticked ever closer to 7:30 pm, the curtain rose and the Sheffield was brought to life with an amazing constructed set that looked like old steel works, this would also double up, with slight prop changes, as other location that we would be taken to during the evening.
The Full Monty is certainly a play that brings the movie to life on the stage, Gary Lucy (Casualty, Hollyoaks) plays Gaz who’s loss of work, failed marriage and the love of his son, is thrown into the world of being on the dole, in attempt to make some money, he gets the idea of stealing steel work with his friend Dave, played by Kai Owen (Torchwood).
I did have an issue with understanding what Gary Lucy was saying, his accent for the show was a bit tricky, also it did seem hard to hear what the cast of the show was saying, as they were fairly quiet from where we were sitting (Row S).
But besides that those little quibbles, The Full Monty is a very funny play with many moments that had all the audience it fits of laughter at the antics that the six guys get up to when they realise that they could make money being strippers at the local pub/club, with an act name of “Buns of Steal” they set on their path to being rich, or so they think.
The show has a great cast along with Lucy and Owen, including Louis Emerick (Brookside, Waterloo Road) as Horse with comic effect especially with his gyrating hips and the reason why his character is called “horse”. Andrew Dunn (Dinner Ladies, Coronation Street) is also nicely cast as Gerald, the gnome loving, straight-laced, husband who hasn;t the heart to tell his wife that he has been made redundant and is living close to the edge as his wife continues to hike up the bills on the credit cards!
Anthony Lewis (Emmerdale, Torchwood) is great as Lomper, a character that isn’t sure what is going on and just wants to get on with his life, while living with his mom, there is a rather shocking scene near the beginning of the play with his character that caused a rather large intake of breath and shock from the audience, this only went to show how well this “stunt” was pulled off on the stage.
Guy played by Chris Fountain (Casualty, The Royal) is another character that is brought to the stage brilliantly, his performance as the Gay character from the film is nicely played and it’s not played harshly, it’s played with a sense of comedic timing and taste.
A special mention has to go to the very talented, Reiss Ward, the young actor playing Nathan who is Gaz’s son, he really has a great stage presence and it seemed that the audience loved him, there is a moment where he is trying to help his dad with getting the money together for the club, this had the audience giving a rather large “awwww” as he offers his pocket money to help his dad and his friends.
With songs that feature from the film by Donna Summer, Rod Stewart, Hot Chocolate and Tom Jones, The Full Monty is a great night out, it’s fun, entertaining and yes folks, they do strip and they do go The Full Monty. The evening’s show deserved its standing ovation.
Don’t miss this fantastic play based on the film at Venue Cymru until the 1st April, book online at venuecymru.co.uk or via their Box Office 01492 87 20 00.
Featured black and white image of The Full Monty cast courtesy documentconwy.co.uk.