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Preview: Up’n’Under, Joseph Rowntree Theatre, York, March 5 to 7
LEON Thompson discovered acting was not all glamour when he was scooped off the ground by the players of The Wheatsheaf Arms in training for John Godber’s Rugby League comedy Up’n’Under.
Pictured introducing Leon to the rigours of the hardiest of contacts sports are, from the left, fellow Rowntree Players members Claire Horsley, Oli Tattersfield, Michael Powell, Mark McDonald, Barry Benson and Graham Smith.
If the name of the team is unfamiliar, don’t worry. Their tale will be told, their fate will unfold, at the Joseph Rowntree Theatre, York, when a risky bet is placed to save one man’s pride. Retired professional Arthur lays a wager that he can train the hapless Wheatsheaf lads to beat the best amateur side in the north, the Cobblers Arms.
They may face humiliation, but once a plucky Yorkshire lass, body-building gym boss Hazel, takes on the task of knocking the remnants of the Wheatsheaf team into shape, they are galvanised to battle through to the very end.
Under the direction of Howard Ella, the Players’ players have been grappling with the moves required to win a game of Rugby League sevens in preparation for the 7.30pm kick-off on Thursday.
Further performances of Godber’s 1984 comedy will follow next Friday and Saturday. Tickets are £9 from York Theatre Royal box office, tel 01904 623823, or at yorktheatreroyal.co.uk or on the door each evening.