ADELAIDE FRINGE FESTIVAL : Faulty Towers Dining Experience

Alison Pollard-Mansbergh (Sybil Faulty), Daley Donnelly (Manuel) and Michael Davoren (Basil Faulty) make up the Interactive Theatre Australia troupe that put on the Faulty Towers Dining Experience for the 2009 Adelaide Fringe Festival at the excellent Quality Inn Hotel, North Adelaide, and what a great job they did!
ADELAIDE FRINGE FESTIVAL : Faulty Towers Dining Experience
Adelaide Fringe Festival: Faulty Towers Dining Experience Alison Pollard-Mansbergh (Sybil Faulty), Daley Donnelly (Manuel) and Michael Davoren (Basil Faulty) make up the Interactive Theatre Australia troupe that put on the Faulty Towers Dining Experience for the 2009 Adelaide Fringe Festival at the excellent Quality Inn Hotel, North Adelaide, and what a great job they did! As an avid Faulty Towers fan, I was concerned that this pleasant Sunday afternoon in Adelaide could be ruined by a try-hard group struggling to mimic the genius comedy that was the 12 Faulty Towers television episodes. How wrong I was. We were ushered into the lavish old style bar room of the Quality Inn Hotel where we enjoyed a quiet drink waiting to be escorted to the dining room for the pending show … or so I thought. That’s when all hell broke loose as a manic Basil Faulty careered through the room screaming to a confused Manuel that he needed to get buckets as the chef has fallen ill with a mild bout of food poisoning. It was a fabulous chaos from that moment. Manuel was as baffled as ever by every instruction handed to him by Basil or Sybil, at one stage batting peanuts into the crowd like Pete Sampras after Sybil asked him to ‘serve’ them one at a time to everybody. Once we were seated for lunch, the pandemonium continued as Basil, Sybil and Manuel served a delicious soup entrée and a beef or chicken main course. The two hour show incorporated most of the memorable subject lines of the television series with references including Manuel’s Hamster, the new German chief, the O’Rielly incident and a sneaky bet on the horses. Close your eyes and you were listening to the original cast, their vocal take off, tones, phrases etc were absolutely dead right, especially Alison Pollard-Mansbergh who had the Sybil laugh down pat. Michael Davoren was sensational as Basil and his mannerisms, accent and manic sprints to the kitchen were hysterical. The dazed but brilliant Manuel played by Daley Donnelly kept the pace going through the whole show as these actors worked frantically to bring the series to life around us. I loved that much of this show was adlibbed around the people in the room whilst they managed to stick to the script. Don’t dare upset Basil by asking for more, or an extra roll, you might regret it. I mentioned to Manuel that there was no ‘pepper’ on our table and he rushed off to return with the local ‘paper’. Nothing was safe. It was a terrific way to spend two hours, funny, mad, frenzied and at times hysterical and any Faulty Towers fan will be well and truly satisfied. Adelaide Fringe Festival’s Faulty Towers Dining Experience season runs until the end of the Fringe (22 March) with some shows already sold out. Tickets cost $71.75 including the meal.

Kym McGuinness

Tuesday 10 March, 2009

About the author

I have been the State Manager SA for realestate.com.au for over four years and previously was involved in the telecommunications industry in South Australia. I have had a long involvement with the Adelaide Fringe as a previous sponsor and avid event follower. Having been singer and musical theatre performer, I love the energy and atmosphere the Fringe brings to Adelaide and the amazing array of artists we are able to enjoy.