Tuesday, November 29

Catch Me If You Can – Blackpool Grand

This was my first visit to the Grand Theatre in Blackpool, and I have to say I was somewhat underwhelmed by the building and the front of house crew (except for Sarah who made me feel very welcome) No-one seemed to know just what was happening. We couldn’t get in at first and the young man said there was a delay but didn’t know why and kept looking for others to help him.  Communication was definitely lacking – maybe just an opening night blip but needs to be looked at.   The music in the auditorium was lovely but very loud that you felt you were shouting at each other. And yet on stage, was quite quiet to begin with – it got better…

Now for my reason to be there…  I could contain my excitement as I was going to see ‘Bobby Ewing’ in person… I try not to read synopsis’ before I show, I like to know be surprised and this was no exception. The title suggests a play taken from the film of the same name, but it was not – it was a very cleverly written mystery adapted from Robert Thomas’ famous French play Trap for a Lonely Man which has inspired numerous screenplays and has an audience guessing the outcome from many thrilling twists and turns.

The costumes were fine and adequate for this piece.

The set, the inside of a mountain cabin, was superb, wonderfully designed and very pretty to look at.

As mentioned previously, the sound was a little off to begin with as we could barely hear Patrick Duffy but within a few minutes, it had been rectified.  Lighting was good with no first night nerves or glitches – timing on the blackouts was done very well…

Now on to the cast… What can I say?  I have had a huge crush on Mr Patrick Duffy since early Dallas days and always thought him a wonderful actor who was very versatile and he definitely did not disappoint… I found him charming and believable in his role of Mr Daniel Corban, a brilliant performance from start to finish.  Duffy’s off-screen partner, Linda Purl played Mrs Elizabeth Corban and when we meet her, the plot thickens.

We meet Inspector Levine who reminds me a little of the great Columbo and he was played by Gray O’Brien and played very well. His job was to unravel this mystery and he gave us many a giggle whilst doing it… Super performance.   We also meet the local Father who was played very well by Ben Nealon.  They were ably supported by 3 other members of cast, and they didn’t need any more…

The play had many twists and turns and kept you guessing right until the very end but left you with more questions as you left the theatre – but why? What if? Did he really? Was it just an……?

It could have gone on for a little longer (curtain down at 21:30) to answer these questions and in all honesty, I would have sat there gladly to find out but maybe the writer wanted the audience to leave asking and never knowing.

It’s charming mystery and was performed well by all on stage…

Well done and I hope the rest of your tour runs smoothly for you. Enjoy it…

“Catch Me If You Can starring Patrick Duffy (Dallas, Man from Atlantis), Linda Purl (Happy Days, Homeland) and Gray O’Brien (Coronation St, Peak Practice) is at Blackpool Grand Theatre from Monday 7th March to Saturday 12th March 2022. https://www.blackpoolgrand.co.uk/event/catch-me-if-you-can

Reviewer:   Hazel Bumby

Reviewed: 7th March 2022

North West End UK Rating: ★★★