“You’re dead…it could be fatal.”
The InPlayers International Drama Group is presenting “Mort”, a play adapted from Terry Pratchett’s fourth Discworld novel. Performances: December 2-4 and December 8-11 at 20:00.Yes, it’s the holiday season and we’re supposed to be thinking warm and fuzzy thoughts at this time of year. But if you like a good dose of black humour with your holiday sweets, this is the play for you.
The InPlayers International Drama Group is presenting “Mort”, a play adapted by Stephen Briggs from Terry Pratchett’s fourth Discworld novel. Those familiar with the book will find their favourite characters brought to life on stage by director Peter Hubbard. Even if you haven’t read any of the Discworld books, you’ll still enjoy this romp through Death’s domain.
Mort (Reinhardt Chamonal), for lack of a better offer, accepts a job as Death’s apprentice. It turns out to be an interesting job for a young lad with some cool benefits like use of the company horse and all-expense paid inter-dimensional travel.
When Mort’s humanity affects his ability to execute his job responsibilities, chaos ensues. The course of history is altered and it looks like wizardly magic is the only thing that can get Mort out of this quandary. But, as usual, there is a deadline.
Meanwhile, Death (Paddy O’Connell) is enjoying a much needed holiday, exploring this strange human thing called ‘fun’. And why should Death be so serious anyway? The Grim Reaper enjoys a cocktail at a royal reception, dances in a conga line and interviews at an employment agency.
Paddy O’Connell plays Death with a pleasing balance of decorum and humour. There’s no explanation for it, but there is something satisfying about Death having an Irish accent.
Reinhardt Chamonal makes us believe that Mort could make such a mess of history.
All the actors do fine work, but the tongue-in-cheek nature of the story means that the comic characters shine. Kevin Knauer plays Cutwell the wizard with scathing humor worthy of “Will and Grace”. This is particularly entertaining, as Cutwell in the book seemed like a slovenly loser. It is fun to see Masud Hussain bring the doorknocker on Cutwell’s house to life. Who would have thought a doorknocker could provide so much entertainment? Ken Kitchen (Albert) delivers his comic lines with expert timing. Christine Blakeley’s interpretation of the High Priestess is worthy of “Saturday Night Live” (kudos to the costume designer as well).
It would have been nice to see a bit more time devoted to establishing the romance between Mort and Ysabell. There is so much else going on that there is not enough time to feel the love.
The sets are simple but effective. Much is left to your imagination, but it’s probably best that way since a lot of the action takes place in another dimension. The cozy space for the performance makes the audience feel like part of the story. The seating is comfortable and the visibility excellent.
- Mort plays December 2-4 and December 8-11 at 20:00
- The Fijnhouttheatre is located at Lootsstraat 39 in Amsterdam
- Ticket prices are € 12 and € 10 (students, CJP, Stadspas)
- Reservations can be made online at www.hetfijnhout.nl, by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 020 6853755