REVIEW: The Maltese Falcon – Lunchtime Theatre at East Kilbride Arts Centre

The success of Oran Mor’s ground-breaking, lunchtime theatre programme has inspired similar initiatives around the country: A Play, A Pie and a Pint now has off-shoots at the Traverse in Edinburgh and the Lemon Tree in Aberdeen, Rutherglen Town Hall has been successfully running a lunch theatre programme for several years and in Glasgow’s southside The Shed in Shawlands is presenting Lunchtime Live with a pie and a drink in the ticket price. Now it’s East Kilbride Arts Centre’s turn with their own take on the genre.

First up this season is Bookend Theatre’s Radio Hour with Dashiell Hammett’s 1930 favourite The Maltese Falcon: the story of hard-boiled private eye Sam Spade and his hunt for the elusive and priceless black bird.

Presented as a 1940’s radio play, with a script based on the 1941 John Huston movie, the cast of nine successfully step in to the shoes of Humphrey Bogart, Peter Lorre, Sydney Greenstreet and Mary Astor to evocatively bring the classic tale to life. The range and quality of the vocal characterisations is impressive and the hour running time zips past in the blink of an eye.

Included in the bargain £10 ticket price is a first-rate lunch of home-made soup, enough sandwiches to feed a battalion and tea and coffee. The soup is vegetarian and the sandwich selection caters for most tastes. The quality is excellent and the servings incredibly generous. Highly recommended for both lunchtime theatre regulars and newcomers alike, this is a quality endeavour.

Next up in the series is The Bishop’s Wife on 8th March

bishops wife ek arts centre

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