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'Brats' let loose on the stage; REVIEWS CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY Crescent Theatre, Birmingham.

Byline: JOHN SLIM

THERE'S a lot of noise and excitement on stage, but by and large, in Roald Dahl's tale of noisome brats let loose in a chocolate factory, it does not spread into the audience.

And Nick Owen's production embraces the usual sustained nose-picking interlude that is as nauseating as ever.

It takes the arrival of Russ Fyles, as Willy Wonka, to inject some much needed panache into the performance, although Jade Woodhouse, with a pleasing contribution as the most prominent brat, could give lessons in sustained screaming.

Gerry Lucas, as her father, has some excellent moments in a bit part, but this is not a show that deserves his often demonstrated talents, and the mix of accents prompts uncertainty as to where it's all happening.

Oliver Stephenson is a likeable Charlie.

The show runs until January 27.
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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Jan 18, 2007
Words:139
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