Wednesday 4 February 2009

David Benson

One of the most remarkable shows I’ve seen was a one-man play based on the life of Kenneth Williams. Written and performed by the remarkable David Benson, ‘Think No Evil’ took the viewer on a astonishing journey through the lives of both the author and the subject.

The way David brought Kenneth Williams to life was fascinating. The intensity of the performance was incredible.

A year later, I went to see his next show, To Be Frank’. The play on words heralds a study of honest autobiographical material interwoven with a resurrection of the late, great Frankie Howerd. Frankie’s pièce de résistance is a remarkable and triumphant second half of the show, in which David remains in character and uncannily summons up all manner of titters in the good old style.

I saw ‘Think No Evil’ and ‘To Be Frank’ twice. One performance of the latter show featured a further surreal twist. At a certain stage in the show, a little bit of audience participation is required by a chosen member of the audience. I was there the night that the stooge was none other than Nicholas Courtney (The Brigadier from Doctor Who and Frankie’s co star in ‘Then Churchill Said To Me’).

I was delighted to be able to see two further shows: ‘David Benson’s Haunted Stage’ and ‘Star Struck’. The latter brought more old favourites to life, in particular The Master himself, Noel Coward. David’s connections with Noel include a very successful portrayal in BBC TV's ‘Goodnight Sweetheart’ and a new show, ‘David Benson Sings Noel Coward’.

One reason that these memories are being relayed here is the creation of new website:

It is easy to keep up to date with all his latest shows and tour dates. So now, dear readers, there are no excuses for not turning off the so-called reality TV shows and getting out to see a real show. Trust me, you won't regret it.

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