Spamalot with Dick and Dom!

by DannyUK

What did you do with your weekend? Me? I sat next to Sara Cox, tripped her 3-year-old up (accidentally), got mentioned on Sara’s Radio 2 show and also met Dick and Dom!

As weekends go, it was bloody brilliant, and I have my good friend Kip to thank for putting me in touch with Laura and Dawn who helped organise the event.

Dick and Dom in Spamalot!

Dick and Dom appearing as King Arthur and Patsy in Monty Python’s Spamalot!

As I mentioned a few days ago, we all got to go and see Dick and Dom appearing as King Arthur and Patsy in Monty Python’s Spamalot at the Playhouse Theatre in London.

Arriving a little early we took part in a small rally where we got to hold banners and placards promoting the show, all of which was shot on film for use in advertising at a later date. The crowd was full of kids bouncing up and down, and shouting various slogans.

Kip and I exchanged a worried look when we heard our five kids loudly chanting “I love Dick!” over and over again, and I’ve no doubt that in years to come I will be retelling their friends that story for pure embarrassment reasons.

I have to say that the legends that are Dick and Dom pretty much passed me by. They really stepped into the public conscious in 2002 with their hit TV show Dick and Dom in da bungalow which ran for several years, and although they encompassed the time between me having left school to having kids, I never got to see their tv shows.

The fact that I’ve heard of both their shows and the pairing themselves shows that they are big names, and though I was looking forward to seeing the pairing starring in Monty Python’s Spamalot, it was my four kids that were really excited about it.

Spamalot is a Monty Python musical, written by Eric Idle. The play is set over 1,000 years ago, and the set reflects the Monty Python silliness with painted cherubs playing electric cars, and a train coming out of the castle. There’s even a tv aerial on one of the turrets.

The show follows the adventure of King Arthur and Patsy (played by Dick and Dom) and the Knights of the Round Table on their quest for the Holy Grail. If that sounds like a familiar Monty Python sketch, it’s because it’s based loosely on their film Monty Python and the Holy Grail, with the added extra of a rendition of Always Look On The Bright Side of Life, which is of course from the Life of Brian.

Spamalot at The Playhouse

Spamalot at The Playhouse

Naturally, as you’d expect from anything penned by Eric Idle there is a lot of silliness in the show, which Dick and Dom seem to lend themselves to naturally. There was quite a bit of swearing interspersed throughout the dialogue, which worried me a little as my 7-year-old and 9-year-old both picked up on various parts of it, but I dare so it’s no worse than they hear on tv after 9 pm should they stay up late.

The show flew by, even with an intermission, and despite my youngest declaring that he didn’t laugh once during the show, I caught him giggling along to the French soldiers farting, and he was as focussed on proceedings as I’ve seen a seven-year-old be, so he definitely enjoyed himself.

He especially liked The Black Knight scene which saw him get in a fight with King Arthur, which was extremely well done on stage. On asking the others what their favourite parts were, my 13 year old responded with the raspberry blowing scene, which my 9-year-old agreed with, adding that her favourite character was the “Woman in the sea”, which she quickly changed to the “Lady in the lake”.

For myself, the chance to have a singalong with Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life was probably my favourite part, even if it did signal the end of the show, which I had thoroughly enjoyed.

The kids and I outside the theatre before seeing Spamalot

The kids and I outside the theatre before seeing Spamalot. (photo by Kip Hakes)

After the show, we got the opportunity to meet Dick and Dom, which had been organised by Laura and Dawn. The kids looked absolutely starstruck, and the two stars of the show took their time talking to people and happily posing for seemingly endless photos.

We rubbed shoulders with the likes of Sara Cox (who I’d sat next to at the theatre and was far too star-struck to talk to, only managing to splutter an apology when I inadvertently tripped one of her kids as they came past my seat), as well as Andrea McLean and Zainab Masood from Eastenders.

It was a perfect finish to a fantastic afternoon, especially as all of the kids managed to get autographs and photos with the two leads, and one that we will all remember for some time.

The show is on at the Playhouse Theatre, Northumberland Avenue near Embankment station in London, and runs until 22nd February 2014 though Dick and Dom step down from their roles in mid-January. If you have a chance to see it, do so. Even as someone who isn’t a massive Monty Python fan, I loved it.

If you had kids, they will definitely enjoy the show, and it’s one of the few times that I’ve managed to cater for the six year age gap that bridges my youngest and eldest.

The kids with Dick and Dom at Spamalot

The kids meet Dick & Dom! (photo by Kip Hakes)

Ticket prices start at £15 and go all the way up to £75.00 each (which are amusingly titled the King Arthur seats), and there’s information about the show and how to book tickets at the official website at Spamalot Official Site

It’s also worth noting that you can get 2 for 1 seats on a Tuesday, and there are possibly discounts available for 6 or more tickets though you need to call for information on large groups.

The performances take place between Monday and Thursday at 8 pm, twice on Fridays with a 6 pm and a 9 pm show, and twice on Saturday starting at 2.30pm and 8 pm. The show run for two hours, with an intermission halfway through, and the theatre holds just under 800 people, so there shouldn’t be too much of a crush getting in.

The closest train and tube stations are Embankment or Charing Cross, both of which are a short walk from the theatre.

Would you be tempted to take your family along to this? Or are there any other shows you are able to recommend that would be suitable for kids?

Disclaimer: These tickets were provided free of charge through a PR company who also arranged the meet and greet afterwards too. My thanks to everyone at BoomEnts.

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