Ticketmaster Summer in Stages

Les Gloriables!

Spitz & Co
Spitz & Co
The Drum, Theatre Royal, Plymouth

Susie Donkin and Lise Boucon

Gloria is at it again. And this time we’re in France, on the run and the barricades as she dreams a dream.

Provided no one mentions Nice or Jacob (or the film), there is a chance the diva will don her snail semen cream and a brave face to make it through her contemporary take on the highlights of Victor Hugo's iconic Les Mis—but it’s all rather touch and go.

Long-suffering ditzy assistant and playing all the rejected minor parts is the hapless Josephine (Susie Donkin) whose comic timing, oversharing and gawkiness delights as Mademoiselle Delaneuf (Lise Boucon more than ably replacing Pauline Morel in the comic duo Spitz and Co) is determined to reunite Europe by her iconic performance.

The duo gives its audiences exactly what it expects: silliness, physicality, prima donna tantrums and an omnipresent Donkin racing around the stage and behind the scenes as Cosette, Inspector Javert, Cockney tooth pulling hairdresser and all other parts, at least most of the time.

There’s two-faced theatre, cries of angry (and frustrated) men, placards, bare breasts, candlesticks and compulsory police chase, ignoble death, audience participation and heroics.

It’s said to be the last in the trilogy (Gloria in the Mist / Gloriator has gone before) and perhaps not a bad thing as the one-trick pony, as endearing as it is, may need to be put out to grass and the duo delight us with a new direction.

Reviewer: Karen Bussell