News Column

Comedy caper for new Sherlock on the block ; THEATRE [Sentinel, The (Stoke-on-Trent, England)]

August 23, 2013


Comedian Joe Pasquale takes on the unlikely role of Sherlock Holmes in a parody version of the famous sleuth COMEDIAN and king of the jungle Joe Pasquale is swapping spandex for Sherlock's famous deerstalker in his latest theatre role.

The squeaky-voiced funnyman, who featured on this year's Dancing on Ice, is playing a comedy version of Arthur Conan Doyle's crimebattling sleuth in Ha Ha Holmes.

The production stops off at Crewe's Lyceum Theatre on Friday, September 13, and The Regent theatre on Friday, November 8. It is being staged by the same team who put together Ha Ha Hamlet! which featured at the 2009 Edinburgh Festival. The company uses a mix of street theatre, slapstick, modern music, audienS ce participation and familiar comic elements to parody well-known stories. Joe, who recently made his West End debut in Spamalot, said: Last year I did a touring production of TREK IS FOR SHERLOCK READ thesent Doctor In The House produced by Jamie Wilson. We really hit it off and looked for another project to work on together. Jamie has been putting on Ha Ha! shows for years.

But this year he wanted to expand it by putting a name in it. I agreed immediately because the script made me laugh out loud.

Joe, a former winner of ITV's I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here, says the role allows him to combine stand-up with acting. I like the discipline of it, he continues. Stand-up is very different, as you can go wherever you like. In a play, you have to stick to the script more rigidly.

What I like about Ha Ha Holmes! is that it incorporates both disciplines. You can go off on a tangent about tortoises, but you have to come back to the script eventually.

MOVE STAR: STORY AT He will be joined on stage by writer Ben Langley as Doctor Watson, and Andrew Fettes, who plays all the other parts the show. In theory, Holmes is trying to find The Hound of the Baskervilles on the moors, says Joe. There is a very long, involved story about a curse on a family, but ultimately that is pointless. It's all about the deduction. It's a really innovative, really funny play about Holmes's methods of solving crimes, and audiences will love getting wrapped up in it. The stories lend themselves to comic treatment. The relationship between Holmes and Watson is funny. Holmes is the master criminal hunter and Watson is his apprentice - there is great scope for comedy there.

We're simply heightening what's already there. It's Monty Python meets Men Behaving Badly meets Sherlock Holmes.

For tickets to see the Lyceum Theatre show, on Friday, September 13, call 01270 368242. To book seats to the Friday, November 8, performance at The Regent theatre, in Hanley, telephone the box office on 0844 871 7627.

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