When God created the world, for the first time, it was a bit of a disaster, although according to Jesus the current one isn’t much of an improvement. In fact it was initially made entirely out of marmalade. Jackson & Grumitt explore the world of Planet Marmalade through 17 different sketches. Who knew that Katherine Howard was a proto-feminist and that lawnmowers were one of her first ideas? Who knew that you measured the height of pyramids in camels, or that the Pharaoh hadn’t quite thought his three-pyramid burial plan through?
It was a farcical start to the evening as we wandered into Hilda’s bar for the preview of ‘Planet Marmalade’. Looking slightly lost we enquired as to the whereabouts of the famous Jackson & Grumitt only to find that we were on the phone to each other a mere five metres apart.
Sitting down to chat, we first talked about how they got into comedy. Their advice to budding comedians was to never be afraid to go for anything and to just get involved. Both have theatrical backgrounds and this certainly comes through when performing their material. A particular challenge of their piece is the sheer number of characters they take on; they definitely impress with how convincingly they play each of these. Look out for some of the cast’s favourite characters, which include Katherine Howard and Jesus himself.
The creators talked to us about the sheer variety of the show. Historical hilarity is peppered with advertisements about new-fangled pills to cure all, as cheery voices intone their medical virtues whilst patients collapse around them. Combining gentle satire and slap-stick farce, this is a show to cater to all tastes.
Classicist Olly Jackson and physics student Richard Grumitt are the masterminds behind the show. Off-stage Jackson focuses on the more farcical sketches whilst Grumitt adds a satirical edge. On-stage they complement each other well with comic timing and confident delivery of their material. This is not the kind of biting comedy offered by the likes of ‘Have I Got News For You’, but something rather more uplifting, that will be sure to leave a smile on your face.
This is the perfect show to add some laughs to a dreary 8th week evening. With an extensive and varied list of props, incorporating everything from work men’s fluorescent jackets to kimonos and even a feather boa, this is not a show to be missed.
Jackson and Grumitt: Planet Marmalade will play at the Burton Taylor studio from 2nd – 6th December at 9:30pm.
Don’t miss our broadcast preview soon to follow.
PHOTO/ BT publicity