Review | One Man, Two Guvnors

Richard Bean's One Man, Two Guvnors (Based on 'A Servant of Two Masters' by Carlo Goldini) is at the New Vic Theatre and we sent Dan Townley along to experience this 'In The Round' version directed by Conrad Nelson.

Review by Dan Townley

Set in Brighton in the year 1963, One Man, Two Guvnors is described in the promotional material as "one the best great British comedies with A cocktail of mistaken identity, mayhem, music, fast-paced physical comedy and silliness"  and I'll be honest from the start - this wasn't my first time watching Richard Bean's play, BUT, it WAS my first time watching it performed 'In The Round' and, it was every bit of magnificent, if not better! 

The comedic performances, the slapstick, the fast-paced script all came to life thanks to an incredibly talented cast led by New Vic Theatre favourite Michael Hugo, who takes on the role of Francis Henshall, an out-of-work skiffle musician who somehow finds himself with not one, but two "Guvnors"! 

It is an absolute joy to watch Hugo take to the stage in this production, it's as if the role of Francis Henshall was made for him with his natural ability to get the audience to hold on to his every word, facial expression and witty asides, it helps to make you feel as if you're being taken on the journey with him and you're sat there backing him and hoping he overcomes the challenges of the play. 

That's not to say the rest of the cast is left behind, every single member of the talented 11-member cast has their moment to shine and the larger-than-life characters are put in the spotlight throughout the show - a special mention to Nick Haverson who plays Alfie - if you're looking for a perfect example of physical comedy - look no further than Haverson's portrayal of Alfie the Waiter and be prepared to nearly pass out with laughter! 

Andrew Billington

This is one of my favourite versions of this show that I've seen, the In The Round set is used to enhance the story and opens up the world of 1963 Brighton to every person in every seat of the auditorium - the moment the show finished we had already looked at tickets for another performance - it's the perfect escape from real life and you get to exercise those stomach muscles with the amount of laughing! 

If you're unsure what to do with an evening, I would 100% recommend taking a trip to the Etruria Road venue. 

Rating - 5 Stars 

One Man, Two Guvnors is at the New Vic Theatre until Saturday 11th May 2024 and tickets are available from

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