One Man, Two Guvnors

One Man, Two Guvnors
Director: Nicholas Hytner
Writer: Richard Bean
Based on: Carlo Goldoni‘s Servant of Two Masters
Cast: James Corden, Jemima Rooper, Oliver Chris, Suzie Toase, Daniel Rigby, Claire Lams, Tom Edden
Seen on: 9.4.2020
[Here’s my review of an Austrian production of Goldoni’s play.]

Content Note: rape joke

Plot:
Pauline (Claire Lams) and Alan (Daniel Rigby) are celebrating their engagement when Frances (James Corden) knocks on the door to announce that his employer Roscoe (Jemima Rooper) is there. Roscoe supposedly died a couple of days ago and his sudden appearance is doubly upsetting because Pauline, and more importantly her dowry, were promised to him long time ago. What Pauline doesn’t know is that it isn’t actually Roscoe but his twin sister Rachel who comes to collect the dowry, so she can flee with her fiancé who did kill Roscoe. As Rachel-as-Roscoe waits for the dowry, she takes camp in a hotel. Also in that hotel – unbeknownst to Rachel – is her fiancé Stanley (Oliver Chris). Thinking him unemployed, Stanley hires Frances who is always looking for a way to get to some food. But serving two guvnors isn’t easy, as Frances soon discovers.

I missed this production when it came to the cinemas and now that National Theatre is offering some of their plays to watch at home, it was the ideal opportunity for me to catch up with this one, since I heard a lot of good things about it. And I have to say, it was a very enjoyable production that definitely made me laugh.

Frances (James Corden) holding out a flower.
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Der Diener zweier Herren [Servant of Two Masters]

Der Diener zweier Herren
Director: Christian Stückl
Writer: Carlo Goldoni
Cast: Markus Meyer, Peter Simonischek, Andrea Wenzl, Irina Sulaver, Johann Adam Oest, Christoph Radakovits, Sebastian Wendelin,  Hans Dieter Knebel, Mavie Hörbiger, Stefan Wieland
Seen on: 23.10.2016

Plot:
Beatrice (Andrea Wenzl) has problems: her fiancé Florindo (Sebastian Wendelin) had to flee after killing her brother Federigo. Now she’s trying to find Florindo and on the way, collect dowry from her brother’s fiancée Clarice (Irina Sulaver), or rather her father Pantalone (Peter Simonischek). But she’ll only succeed by convincing them that Federigo is not actually dead – so she travels disguised as him. Traveling with her is her servant Truffaldino (Markus Meyer). Truffaldino is unhappy with his pay and always hungry. So when they stop at a hotel where another guest offers Truffaldino a job as servant, he accepts – unaware that it’s Florindo. But having to serve two masters at the same time is more complicated than Truffaldino expected.

I’m not a huge fan of comedies of error in general, but this rendition of Servant of Two Masters was rather enjoyable and funny, even if it didn’t leave me flat out enthusiastic.

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