In 1910 the unknown Charlie Chaplin and Stan Laurel set sail for New York as part of Fred Karno’s famous music hall troupe. On the journey, Charlie and Stan shared a cabin and then spent two years together touring North America, with Stan as Charlie’s understudy.
Stan returned home, later finding success with his soulmate Oliver Hardy. Charlie developed his Little Tramp character and within five years became one of the most famous figures in the world. In Charlie Chaplin’s highly detailed autobiography, Lancashire-born Stan Laurel is never mentioned, yet Stan talked about Charlie all his life.
Playing fast and loose with the facts, looking at an unknown period in comic history when two maverick imaginations collided for a brief time, and with an
original piano score composed by Mercury Award Nominee Zoe Rahman played live each night, The Strange Tale of Charlie Chaplin and Stan Laurel, is no nostalgic bio-drama. Instead, writer and director Paul Hunter has created a hilarious and deeply moving homage to two men who changed the world of comedy forever.
The cast comprises Sara Alexander, returning to HOME after appearing in Bryony Kimmings’ A Pacifist’s Guide to the War on Cancer in 2016; Nick Haverson, a regular on TV in series such as Scott and Bailey and Casualty; newcomer Jerone Marsh-Reid, who has a background in breakdancing and brings it to the production, plays Stan Laurel; and Amalia Vitale, recently heard as the voice of Lula in Farmageddon, the recent Shaun the Sheep film, as Charlie Chaplin.
“As a company who has consistently sought to inhabit the space between laughter and pain,” says Paul Hunter. “We were intrigued to uncover a hidden and poignant chapter of comedy history.
“In some ways we set out to create a comically unreliable tribute to two extraordinary artists. We were determined to value fiction over fact, fantasy over reality, and shine a very unusual light on a pair of show business legends.”
The events in this play are fictional. This play is certainly not endorsed by the estates of Charlie Chaplin, Stan Laurel, or anyone else for that matter!
Tue 4 February 2020, 19:30
Wed 5 February 2020, 19:30 (plus post-show discussion)
Thu 6 February 2020, 19:30
Fri 7 February 2020, 19:30
Sat 8 February 2020, 14:00, 19:30
TICKETS £10-£24 (concessions from £5)