Ben Elton’s Silly Cow sold out at Abbey Theatre in St Albans

PUBLISHED: 14:22 14 January 2019 | UPDATED: 14:18 16 January 2019

Company of Ten's production of crude Ben Elton comedy Silly Cow has sold out at the Abbey Theatre Studio in St Albans. Picture: Anne Frizell

Company of Ten's production of crude Ben Elton comedy Silly Cow has sold out at the Abbey Theatre Studio in St Albans. Picture: Anne Frizell

Anne Frizell

An upcoming St Albans production of Ben Elton’s crude comedy about an obnoxious journalist and her very fitting comeuppance has sold out.

The Company of Ten’s laugh-out-loud production of Silly Cow opens at the Abbey Theatre Studio this week.

However, the Abbey Theatre website states that Ben Elton’s outrageous adult comedy has now sold out.

Tickets are available for the St Albans theatre’s next main stage production, Beautiful Thing by the eclectic writer Jonathan Harvey.

Harvey is also known for Gimme Gimme Gimme, Dusty – the Dusty Springfield Musical and some recent episodes of ITV soap Coronation Street.

In Silly Cow, Doris Wallace is a bitchy magazine feature writer, who likes to go gunning for celebrities with her decidedly venomous pen.

She’s got her own telly column and its success is built on nothing more than slander and lies.

Sitting pretty in her fashionable apartment she thinks she has all that a tough tabloid journalist could want – a toy boy with a regular supply of Colombian coke, a pretty personal assistant who might just share her sexual preferences, and the prospect of her very own TV show.

However, Doris is being sued for libel by an actress whose career has been decimated by one of the reporter’s particularly cruel reviews.

And now the fun really starts.

First shown in 1991, the Daily Mirror said of that production: “Crude, clever and killingly funny”.

How could it be anything else with its hilarious Carry On-style sexual innuendos and stingingly funny Ben Elton one-liners?

A whole decade before the Leveson inquiry, Ben Elton is questioning with this play the price of ambition and the potential consequences of journalistic liberty, all in the quest to sell greater quantities of newsprint.

Director Catherine Hieatt said: “While working on this production, I and the cast have focused on the development of Ben Elton’s wonderfully funny characters, his comedy techniques, and his hilarious comedy sequences.

“You know, they say John Sullivan’s Only Fools and Horses was a success because it had at least one gag per page.

“Well comedy maestro Ben Elton at times pulls off at least two and sometimes even three gags a page. So fasten your seatbelts!”

Performances take place in the Studio from Friday, January 18 to Saturday, January 19 at 8pm and then on Sunday, January 20 at 2.30pm.

There are further performances from Tuesday, January 22 to Saturday, January 26 at 8pm.

• To book tickets for future Abbey Theatre shows, go to www.abbeytheatre.org.uk or call the box office on 01727 857861.

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