By David Tickell
Say, old sport, that's a simply wizard show those chappies down at La Boite are putting on. It's dashed clever of them to dream up a super show about the daring exploits of jolly, old Errol Flynn.
And what a title! Errol Flynn's Great Big Adventure Book For Boys is its name and it's packed with tales of daring-do, amorous adventures, bags of fun and more of the same.What a top-whole do. The lad himself would be thrilled to bits.
The play, hereinafter referred to as EFGBABFB is a riotously funny and at times frighteningly sad, account of what made the dashing film star tick. Written by Rob George and directed by Malcolm Blaylock, the play is a send-up and a male-chauvinistic documentary of the life of Australia's greatest son of the celluloid..
Errol Flynn is dashingly played by Stephen Hadden, pomaded hair and flashing teeth charming the ladies by the score, while his masterly swordsmanship contemptuously disposes of the villains left, right, and centre. He swashes his buckle with disarming ease, then has time for a quick snort before dashing off to chat up another darling.
Interspersed between his adventures, amorous and intrepid, are song and dance routines straight out of 1940s Hollywood. The assembled cast, Stephen Billet, Narelle Hooper, Suzanne Marshall, Anna McCrossan, Stephen Preston, Rosamund Vidgen and Michael Williams all perform a multitude of roles, and do them extremely well. The torch songs and comedy routines are particularly well done, and take me back to the great days of the Hollywood era that produced such stars as Flynn, Grant, Fairbanks et al.
While the adventures are being trekked out for our entertainment reporter Lois Tudor played superbly by Christine Hoepper, is busy trying to get the facts together for a biography on the great star. Trouble is he can't stand still, or keep out of trouble long enough for her to get some palatable facts together for a story. His marital mishaps, drunken carousals and affairs involving young girls keep him constantly in the public limelight as he fights this rape case or that sexual assault.
This production of Rob George's play is simply super, one of the best plays of the year in Brisbane in fact. Errol would be proud of you. Set, costumes, singing, choreography are all excellent. The show continues for another two weeks. Don't miss this wizard show.
The Telegraph, December 4 1980