REVIEW: Arsenic and Old Lace at The Spring, Havant

Have your say

Written in 1939, Arsenic and Old Lace is a dark comedy that tells the story of two elderly ladies living in Brooklyn who have an interesting `charitable’ hobby – giving `happiness’ to lonely gentlemen with the aid of elderberry wine and arsenic.

It can sometimes be a challenge to produce a play which is rooted in its time and keep it fresh, but HumDrum rose to this challenge.

As the performers settled, the play went from strength to strength

As with many plays with lots of characters, the start was a bit slow and some of the accents a bit wobbly, but as the performers settled, the play went from strength to strength.

This is a subtle comedy (very black but gentle) where characters shouldn’t be overplayed, and Lin Warner and Sue Bartlett (as Abby and Martha Brewster) captured the naivety of the Brewster sisters superbly.

They made us chuckle throughout – but Ben McCready (a suitably menacing Jonathan Brewster) and Aaron Holdaway (Dr Einstein) made us laugh out loud.

Dr Einstein manoeuvring a body to the cellar was cleverly played and very funny.

With plenty of twists and turns, this play sent us home still chuckling.

Until tomorrow.