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‘How to relax in Amsterdam’ Salford Arts Theatre, 23rd May 2013.

Review: How To Relax in Amsterdam – Salford Arts Theatre

By Jenny Dutton
SalfordOnline Rating: 4 out of 5

Salford’s independent theatre in Kemsing Walk boasted the premiere of a fantastic new comedy by John Waterhouse.

Laughter echoed through the audience as How to Relax in Amsterdam brought cleverly crafted farce to the stage.

As the very English Peter comes to stay with his friend in Amsterdam, Saskia, for a few weeks, trouble starts to emerge when Peter realises he’s lost his passport. The pair soon discovers that his identity has been used in a robbery and now Peter is being framed for robbing a bank. Or is he?

Set in a small apartment, the theatre was a completely redesigned to be a funky apartment for a young Dutch girl, and music to match a 60’s American sitcom, the mood was just right for the heartwarming comedy to come.

A play filled with Salfordian actors, it’s no wonder that the talent of the cast was pouring off the stage.

Peter, played by Scott Berry, is a loveable character whose life seems to be continuously spinning out of control as one problem after another stumbles his way. It was obvious the audience only wanted the best for him as cheers erupted from the crowd with each small victory appeared on the horizon for the English hero.

Wonderful comedic timing was a constant throughout the performance but it was Chris Helmsley’s portrayal of Henk, the police officer that stole the show. A brilliant presence on stage coupled with hysterical presumptions and desires, Henk put a smile on my face every time he came on stage.

Leni Murphy as Trius, the punk fighting for women’s rights and not afraid to give all she’s got if it gets her what she wants, with an excellent show of the conflicting nature a woman has every right to inflict on men!

As the story continued and the threat of Peter becoming even more entangled with the law progressed, the tense atmosphere of the plot was balanced well with the ridiculous wigs and unbelievable accents that arrived on stage. By the end every character was in a totally different costume to how they arrived in order to fool someone else, leaving Peter in a world of trouble and confusion.

A side-splitting comedy to have you laughing all night long; yet another success from Salford Arts Theatre team of in house productions and writer John Waterhouse.

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