Tag Archives: Bo Poraj

REVIEW: What’s in a Name – Theatre Royal, Glasgow

Matthieu Delaporte and Alexandre de la Patellière’s 2010 play Le Prénom was a hit of such magnitude it spawned not only a big screen French version in 2012 but a German film incarnation in 2018. Jeremy Sam’s translation, What’s in a Name? has arrived in Glasgow and proves to be a class act from start to end.

It’s the present day in a trendy double height loft conversion in Peckham, teacher Elizabeth (Laura Patch) is throwing a dinner party for her brother Vincent (Joe Thomas), brash, flash and with more than a hint of a Thatcher-era, boy-made-good bravado; all three-piece-suit, slicked back hair and ill-concealed misogyny. Vincent and his partner Anna (Louise Marwood) are about to become parents, lecturer husband Peter (Bo Poraj) and childhood friend Carl (Alex Gaumond), a trombonist with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, round out the company.

The revelation by Vincent of the name he intends to call his expected son, turns tiny tensions into a torrent of tirades, as every petty resentment  from the past thirty years surfaces. The accusations and recriminations fly, and some pretty big secrets are revealed.

What’s in a Name may be the typical upper-middle class intellectual, philosophical fare that the French typically love, but this fast, furious, and funny social comedy, is a welcome breath of fresh air. The witty, rapid-fire dialogue shines a light perfectly on a certain strata of bourgeois British society and the “pseudo intellectual pick and mix” of values they hold. It’s all enhanced by a knock-out cast who deliver the linguistic gymnastics with class and flair. A touch of class for the autumn theatre season.

Image: Piers Foley

Originally published at The Reviews Hub

NEWS: Full casting for What’s In A Name confirmed

Full casting has been confirmed for the witty, razor sharp What’s In A Name which is to play at Theatre Royal, Glasgow next month.

Joining the previously announced Joe Thomas, best known for his role in E4’s The Inbetweeners, are Bo Poraj (Miranda, Musketeers), Laura Patch (Afterlife, Star Stories), Summer Strallen (Top Hat, Young Frankenstein) and Alex Gaumond (Company, Dirty Rotten Scoundrel, Matilda).

What’s In A Name? is adapted and directed by Jeremy Sams from the award-winning French film and stage sensation, Le Prènom, by Matthew Delaporte and Alexandre de La Patellière. The production will visit Guildford’s Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, from 5-14 September, before touring to Glasgow, York, Aylesbury, Cambridge, Windsor, Richmond and Southampton.

Father-to-be Vincent and his partner Anna are invited to dinner by his sister Elizabeth and her husband, Peter. They are joined by childhood friend Carl for a mature and sophisticated gathering.

The meal is lovingly prepared, and wine carefully selected. The friends are prepared for the usual humorous exchanges they’ve come to expect.

But tonight, a startling revelation about the name chosen for Vincent’s and Anna’s expected child becomes the catalyst for a destructive argument which spirals hysterically out of control. Tonight no one is holding back! Egos, childish resentment and unspoken feelings are relentlessly and hilariously exposed for the first time.

Playing Vincent is Joe Thomas, an actor and writer best known as Simon in the multi-award winning E4 show The Inbetweeners. Following the success of The Inbetweeners (and the two eponymous films that followed) Joe starred as Kingsley in all four series of Fresh Meat, and as George in Chickens, which he also co-wrote. Most recently Joe starred as Nick in the 2018 feature film The Festival and as Martin Lavender in the BBC2 sitcom White Gold. Joe has script development deals with Channel 4 and Fudge Park/BBC and was on the latest series of Dave’s Taskmaster.

Bo Poraj is playing Peter. He is perhaps most well-known for his role as Mike in the ever popular BBC comedy series Miranda. He played a regular role in Musketeers (BBC) and has been seen in The Thick Of It and Boomers (also BBC). On stage his most recent credits include Rasheeda Speaking (Trafalgar Studios 2, nominated for Best Supporting Male in a Play Award, Off-West End Theatre Awards), Gloria, Acceptance (Hampstead Theatre) and Blithe Spirit (Theatre Royal Bath, UK Tour, West End). Film credits include The Boat That Rocked.

The role of Elizabeth is played by Laura Patch, a comedy performer and actor known for playing various roles in Star Stories. Most recently Laura appeared in Ricky Gervais’ Netflix series Afterlife. Further television credits include A Brief History of Tim, New Tricks, Dol & Em, Youngers, Holby City, Starlings, Being Human and The IT Crowd, along with the web series Bad Mother. Film credits include Songbird alongside Cobie Smulders and Jessica Hynes.

Playing Anna is Olivier Award-nominated actress Summer Strallen. She most recently starred as Alice in Alexis Michalik’s Intra Muros at Park Theatre and she is best known for leading West End stage roles in Top Hat, The Sound of Music, Young Frankenstein, The Drowsy Chaperone, Guys and Dolls, The Boy Friend, Love Never Dies, Cats, and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. On TV, her credits include Hollyoaks in which her character Summer Shaw auditioned for and won the role of Maria Von Trapp in The Sound of Music which Strallen went on to play on stage.

Carl is played by Alex Gaumond, who most recently received critical acclaim for his role as Paul in Marianne Elliott’s multi-Olivier® award-winning revival of Stephen Sondheim’s Company in the West End. Further stage credits include A Christmas Carol (Old Vic), Caroline, Or Change (Chichester Festival Theatre), The Taming of the Shrew (Shakespeare’s Globe), The Trial of Jane Fonda (Park Theatre), Into the Woods (Manchester Royal Exchange), Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Sweeney Todd (ENO) and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, RSC’s Matilda: The Musical, Top Hat and We Will Rock You (all West End). Film credits include The Hustle, My Dinner with Hervé and Hampstead.

Highly respected director Jeremy Sams has adapted and directed multiple celebrated productions. As a director his credits include Oklahoma! (Chichester Festival Theatre), The Wizard of Oz (West End and World Tour), The Sound of Music (West End and Toronto), Noises Off (National Theatre, West End, UK Tour and Broadway) and Benefactors (UK Tour and West End). His credits as an adaptor include The Park (Royal Shakespeare Company), The Rehearsal (Almeida and West End), Beckett (West End) and Les Parents Terribles (National Theatre and Broadway).

The original play premiered in 2010 at the Théâtre Édouard VII in Paris, France, where the production received six Molière Award nominations and ran for over 300 performances. Matthew Delaporte and Alexandre de La Patellière then wrote the screenplay for the film (2011) which played to over 3.25 million people in France alone. It received widespread critical acclaim, and won several César awards from the French Academy of Cinema Arts and Techniques, along with the Grand Prix Hydro-Québec at the Festival du cinéma international en Abitibi-Témiscamingue, and the Radio Canada Audience Award at the Cinéfranco International Francophone Film Festival in Toronto. The Italian translation of the movie went on to receive several prestigious Italian National Syndicate of Film Journalist awards. The play has now been translated into over 22 languages, and has had incredible box office success around the world.

What’s In A Name? is written by Matthew Delaporte and Alexandre De La Patellière with adaptation, translation and direction by Jeremy Sams. Set will be designed by Francis O’Connor and lighting design is by Rick Fisher.

LISTINGS

What’s in a Name?

Theatre Royal, Glasgow

Tue 1 – Sat 5 Oct 2019

Tue-Sat, 7.30pm

Thu & Sat, 2.30pm

www.atgticckets.com/glasgow

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