The Entertainer @ Milton Keynes Theatre 03.09.2019

Shane Richie treads in Sir Laurence Olivier’s footsteps in The Entertainer at MK Theatre this week

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It feels barely a moment ago since we last saw Shane Richie take the stage of Milton Keynes Theatre.

If you remember, he was here last Christmas playing Robin Hood in Pantomime, but this time you won’t be laughing yourself silly.

Shane Richie takes on the role of Archie Rice in The Entertainer, made famous by Sir Laurence Olivier in the 1960 film of the same name.

This stage production sees the story of The Entertainer pulled forward in time from the original to 1982. Thatcher is prime minster and the controversial Falklands war is happening.

Archie Rice (Shane Richie) is the original song and dance man, a man who lives for his inappropriate jokes and a big spotlight to follow him around, but the age of his showtime is dying and the good times are diminishing as fast as the electricity meter cash.

It might be all razzmatazz on stage but the working class family of Archie Rice is where you see all the impact of everything that’s bigger than them.

The Entertainer is not all that unlike an episode of Eastenders, with its big dose of real life laid out for all to see, but don’t expect to be falling in love with Archie Rice, in fact he’s rather ick.

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Shane Richie is just brilliant as Archie Rice. It’s like the role was written for him.

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Sara Crowe delivers a touching performance as his struggling, mistreated wife.

It’s a heavy script. Expect lots of dialogue in places with numerous tense and uncomfortable scenes.

Have you ever seen the original 1960 film or the play before this production? What do you think of Archie Rice? He’s a bit of a skeeze isn’t he?

I’m curious to see the 1960 film starring Sir Laurence Olivier, to see how he plays Archie but I gotta say, for me, Shane Richie nails it.

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The Entertainer is at Milton Keynes Theatre 2 – 7 September 2019.

For full transparency, tickets to the show were kindly gifted to me from Milton Keynes Theatre.