The Dirty Flea-Bitten Scrounging Bastard by North Tyneside’s Cloud Nine Theatre Company.
The appearance of an unwanted guest is a rich plot-line to mine, and so it proves with Cloud Nine Theatre Company’s latest play.
Two London property developers and their wives hold a celebration dinner to toast their latest success. They’re about to have pudding when they’re interrupted by a scruffily dressed man who refuses to leave them alone.
Edwin (Dale Jewitt), the least likable character, is irritated by the stranger’s knock at the door. Rich (Lawrence Neale) is more of a placator.
With their ‘diamond geezer’ accents the characters felt a bit too Del Boy, but the realistic contemporary dialogue made them seem authentic.
I wasn’t sure why Muriel (Samantha Neale) kept falling asleep at the beginning of the play, but the character really seemed to take off when she revealed that she’d let the scruff into the house, and the spare room.
All of the cast were strong, but Jill Dellow as Laura had some particularly funny lines, which she delivered with precise comic timing.
Neil Armstrong, who has directed several Cloud Nine plays, did a great job of moving the cast beyond the table and the doorbell. I particularly enjoyed the business with the fish slice as a possible weapon.