On 4, 5 and 6 October the Farrer Theatre was alight with Eton’s own rendition of The Producers. The satirical comedy by Mel Brooks hit the stage with a bang, becoming one of the biggest productions in Farrer Theatre history. Directed by Dr Liviero (ML), the actors were was accompanied by an incredible boy-led orchestra, who performed the extravagant musical numbers with aplomb.
The musical is set in New York, where former King of Broadway producer Max Bialystock (Lorenzo Harvey Allchurch, HWTA) faces yet more disappointment because his new material is failing continuously on opening night. He meets an accountant, Leo Bloom (Calum Baker, JMG) with dreams of becoming a Broadway producer who notices that, through a legal loophole, one could make more money if a play drops than if it were to be a success.
The two then set out to raise huge funds to put on the most assured drop possible. This is how they come across the musical Springtime for Hitler, written by Hitler-loving Neo-Nazi Franz Liebkind (James Newbery, AMM), a musical they are certain will be hated by the critics. The two then search for the worst director in New York, Roger de Bris (Robbie Owen KS) and his whole entourage, who set out to ‘keep it gay’ with a production about Hitler, a surprising juxtaposition to say the least. Combining this with appalling actors, including an attractive young Swedish woman named Ulla (Nico Fitzwilliam-Lay, SPH), the production seems destined to be a car crash. Their musical, funded by little old ladies, somehow goes onto be a hit, resulting in both Bialystock and Bloom going to prison for investment fraud.
The quality of performance was outstanding, with special mentions going to Baker and Harvey Allchurch for their renditions of Leo Bloom and Max Bialystock respectively, as well as a brilliant cameo performance from Mr Hutton. The whole ensemble deserves to be celebrated for all the hard work and effort which clearly went into putting on such an ambitious production at such a high standard.