The Vicar of Dibley at The Barn, Milton

The Vicar of Dibley is at The Barn in Milton Park from May 20-23.
The Vicar of Dibley is at The Barn in Milton Park from May 20-23.
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No no no no no-one doesn’t like The Vicar of Dibley, so go to The Barn in Milton Park this Wednesday to see the Portsmouth Players put television’s funniest parish on the stage.

The show, adapted for the theatre by Ian Gower and Paul Carpenter, is a compilation of the funniest moments from series one and two.

Everyone keeps asking me if I will be dunking myself in a chocolate fountain but unluckily for me I wont be.

Kate Claxton

Kate Claxton, the Head of Drama at Charter Academy – ‘I am practising what I preach,’ she says – will be donning the dog collar to play Geraldine Granger.

But luckily for her, she won’t have to jump into a flooded well. She says: ‘Of course, they are big boots to fill, so I have been watching as many episodes as I can to prepare. I love the show so it isn’t hard. I have been trying to get the essence of Dawn French but also to put my own stamp on it. It has to be Kate Claxton’s version of Dawn French.

‘There are iconic character traits that you have to copy like Mrs Cropley’s terrible recipes and Jim Trott’s “no no no no no” but we have found our own way of interpreting the characters and this has come from playing around in rehearsal. It has been a lot of fun.’

Kate says that after three months of rehearsals, the show still makes her laugh.

‘My favourite moment that I am in is the discussion my character has with Alice Tinker about what they are giving up for Lent. It is a joy to listen to my co-star Jacqueline Willis deliver the I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter speech. I also like the scene where I marry Alice and Hugo. It makes me feel very vicarly.’

Unfortunately, not every moment can be fitted into a couple of hours.

‘Everyone keeps asking me if I will be dunking myself in a chocolate fountain but unluckily for me I wont be,’ says Kate.

The Vicar of Dibley is from May 20-23. Tickets: £10, call (023) 9237 0501.