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The Play That Goes Wrong at the Duchess Theatre (Photo: Helen Maybanks)

The Play That Goes Wrong at the Duchess Theatre (Photo: Helen Maybanks)

Everything you need to know about The Play That Goes Wrong

Carly-Ann Clements

By Carly-Ann Clements First Published 28 August 2018, Last Updated 23 November 2018

We all need a good ol’ laugh during these challenging times. Luckily, we have some brilliant shows in the West End that will get you chuckling and help you forget the real world. One such comedy is the accident-prone The Play That Goes Wrong. Still to see the award-winning, international hit? Here’s everything you need to know about the rib-tickling show.

The backstory

Created by comedy troupe Mischief Theatre, it first premiered at London’s Old Red Lion Theatre in 2012. After a successful run, it moved to Trafalgar Studios in 2013. A UK tour quickly followed in 2014 comprising 17 venues including the Edinburgh Fringe. The tour was such a success, the show found a home at the Duchess Theatre in September of 2014 where it’s been playing ever since.

The hit slapstick show won the Best New Comedy Award at the 2015 Olivier Awards as well as rave reviews. The ever-growing popularity of the unique West End show led to it receiving a second UK tour and an Asia tour, as well as a Broadway transfer which earned the show a Tony Award for Scenic Design In A Play in 2017.

It has also been on a US tour and it’s played in France, Israel, and Italy. There are also plans for it to run in China, Australia, Hungary, Germany, and more.

The Play That Goes Wrong at the Duchess Theatre (Photo: Helen Maybanks)

What’s the show about?

The chaotic comedy follows the Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society – an amdram group putting on a production of a 1920s murder mystery. But, as the show’s title may suggest, things don’t go as smoothly as they would have hoped. As the show progresses, things fall apart as the sets collapse, lines are forgotten and props go missing. But, as the saying goes, the show must go on… even if it limps to the final bow.

What age is it appropriate for?

The Play That Goes Wrong is recommended for audiences aged 8 and over.

How long is The Play That Goes Wrong?

The show has a run-time of 2 hours and 5 minutes including one interval. Performances are normally at 7.30pm Monday to Saturday, with a 7pm performance on Sunday and matinee performances at 2.30pm on Saturday and 3pm on Sunday.

Where is it playing?

It’s playing at the Duchess Theatre on Covent Garden’s Catherine Street. The nearest stations are Covent Garden (500m) and Temple (600m). You can also get to the Duchess Theatre via overground train to London Charing Cross (650m).


The Play That Goes Wrong at the Duchess Theatre (Photo: Helen Maybanks)

Who is in The Play That Goes Wrong cast?

It originally starred the creators and founding members of Mischief theatre, Henry Lewis, Jonathan Sayer, and Henry Shields. They appeared in the show during its initial staging, the UK tour, and the start of the Duchess Theatre run. They’ve since left to star in their other creations, including Peter Pan Gone Wrong and The Comedy About A Bank Robbery.

Annie is played by Katie Bernstein. Katie has appeared in many West End productions including Mrs Henderson Presents and Urinetown, as well as appearing in Rent, the 40th Godspell Anniversary Concert, and Allegro.

Trevor is played by Graeme Rooney. As Graeme has appeared in TV and film as well as theatre across the country, he may look familiar to you. You may recognise him from Skins, Ashes To Ashes, and Case Histories.

Chris is played by Patrick Warner. Like the principal members of Mischief Theatre, Patrick trained at LAMDA. He appeared as Chris in the Asia and UK tours of the show. He’s also appeared in One Man Two Guvnors both in the West End and on tour.

Jonathan is played by Jason Callender. Like Patrick, Jason has appeared in The Play That Goes Wrong before as he was part of the international touring cast. While training, he appeared in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Angels in America, and Sweeney Todd.

Dennis is played by Edward Howells. Edward also trained at LAMDA. He was in the interactive dining experiences Faulty Towers The Dining Experience and The Wedding Reception, plus he appeared in Hamlet and The Happy Prince.

Robert is played by Edward Judge. Edward has appeared in stage shows such as Avenue Q and History Boys. He’s also acted in TV shows such as Sherlock, Doctors and You, Me And The Apocalypse.

Sandra is played by Meg Mortell. Meg was also in the UK and International tours of the show. She’s also written and starred in shows at the Edinburgh and Brighton Fringe Festival.

Max is played by Alastair Kirton. Alastair has appeared in many London theatre productions. His credits include Goosebumps, Accomplice, Lacuna, The Changing Room and Restitution.

Will I like it?

It’s smart, it’s hilarious and it’s very, very silly. With a healthy dose of physical, theatrical and verbal comedy, there’s something for everything. Audiences of all ages will chuckle away throughout the show. And, really, who couldn’t do with a proper laugh right now?

Where can I buy tickets to The Play That Goes Wrong?

Right here with us! Just visit Official London Theatre’s The Play That Goes Wrong page to find the best available tickets for great prices.


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