Bottoms Up!

Minotaur Theatre Company
The Space on the Mile – until August 17th
5 Stars (5 / 5)

Register a religion and you can get charitable status from the government. Know what that means? Pay no taxes! Unless of course the Inland Revenue investigate you and say you’ve got 24 hours to prove to HMRC that your church has at least 10 congregants. That could leave you penniless and even in jail.

Wayne’s little conjob isn’t turning out exactly as planned, but maybe he’ll use his charm and charisma to talk a few randoms into joining his Church. Problem is, the conservatives don’t get on with the gays, the atheists are incredulous at the gullibility of their New-Age girlfriends, and the Satanists… well… you get the gist.

This fantastic farce, written and directed by Alasdair Lindsay, is quick-witted and sharp. The performers deliver melodrama with expert timing, often playing more than one character. This eventually becomes a plot device which reaches fever pitch at the climax of the piece where the actors must hold down each of their roles at once, and even swap distinguishing objects so they can play one another’s roles to pull up the slack to hilarious effect. Katie Suitor gives a knock-down performance as Kathie, Wayne’s incredulous assistant. Expert use of the stage creates a frenetic atmosphere full of energy. The audience are gripped and the laughs have them holding on to their bellies as much as their seats.