Theatre review: Mr Kolpert at the King’s Head Theatre
Funny and disturbing black comedy that makes creative use of cranberries
Dark humour meets whodunnit in this 80 minute sparkler of a play by David Gieselmann.
A young(ish) urban couple, Sarah and Ralf, invite Sarah’s prissy colleague, Edith and her fiery-tempered buffoon of a husband, Bastian, round for dinner on a Saturday night.
Social awkwardness ensues: the hosts knock back the booze whilst their guests are confirmed teetotallers. Sarah, who is much more interested in tarting herself up than cooking, orders pizzas. Classy.
But then Abigail’s Party morphs into Alfred Hitchcock’s Rope when Sarah and Ralph joke they’ve done a murder because they were a bit bored actually.
You may also want to watch:
A large trunk in the centre of the room becomes the focus for intense scrutiny: accusations fly and the pizza delivery boy gets a whole lot more than he bargained for. As did I because I was sitting at the front – you have been warned.
Still, it is nice to see such a creative use of cranberries and their juice. And to witness some excellent fight scenes – presumably thanks to Lewis Penfold who has the fantastic credit of “stage combat” in the programme.
- 1 'Extreme' noise complaint as 150 gather for Islington party
- 2 Statue of Philip Noel-Baker replaced in Islington after 35 years
- 3 Meet the owner of the Camden Passage shop window where nothing is for sale
- 4 Elderly woman robbed of precious watch in daylight Finsbury Park incident
- 5 What do smoking and People Friendly Streets have in common?
- 6 'We can do better': Islington Society calls for rethink on Barnard Park plans
- 7 Almost 5,000 Islington people pinged by Covid app in one week
- 8 New Lidl to open in Finsbury Park's Arts Building next week
- 9 Islington and Camden police chief to leave Met after 29 years
- 10 New pub opens in place of The Monarch in Chalk Farm Road
The cast were convincing but overacted on occasion – less is more given the crazy plot twists and character U-turns in the second half, and the size of the theatre.
Laura Freeman is particularly good as Edith who goes from buttoned-up submissive to foul-mouthed adulteress as soon as she sheds her cardigan.
The combination of humour and horror – not an easy one to get right – is handled with aplomb by director, Rachel Valentine Smith.
And if this is not enough to persuade you to see it – there is also some nudity. A disturbing and funny black comedy.
* Mr Kolpert is at the King’s Head Theatre in Upper Street, N1, until August 5.