In BathNews

Crimes On Centre Court, a new comedy thriller from Bath’s multi award-winning New Old Friends theatre company, sees the action play out on the courts of Whombledun with another dose of mirth, murder and mayhem, this time with a side of tennis. Based on a story from New Old Friends’ podcast (number 2 in iTunes fiction chart), this hilariously inventive, new comedy thriller serves countless characters with quick-fire changes and lightning wit as a brand-new murder mystery unfolds court-side. Written and directed by Feargus Woods Dunlop, Crimes On Centre Court opens at the Theatre Royal Bath appearing from Tuesday 24 to Saturday 28 May before touring to theatres nationwide this autumn.

Lord Knows, the chair of The Whombledun International Invitational Tennis Tournament, has died and his son Hugh, is suspicious. The police won’t take the case so Hugh calls in Perry & Penny Pink, private investigators. This deucey summertime treat will rally the spirits and leave audiences wanting a second serve-ing of the volley of gags and visual delights. New Old Friends have built a national reputation with their wildly inventive set-pieces, twisty plots and commitment to unadulterated entertainment.

The multi-tasking cast of this new comedy caper are all returning New Old Friends performers. Kirsty Cox plays the roles of Wendy Weaver, Ingrid Ergätson, Notta Damclu and Jean Samson; Sedona Rose appears as Penny Pink and Erica Wise; Ben Thornton appears as Perry Pink, Lord Knows, Ivan Borodl and Owen Owens and Emile Clarke plays the roles of Hugh Knows, Helmut Hachenburg, Fred Digby and Jon Samson. All four cast members will also perform additional cameo roles in the production.

Feargus Woods Dunlop said, “We are utterly thrilled to be presenting a brand-new show and hope that this blast of tennis-inspired nonsense can kick off a summer of joy and laughter. Setting a murder mystery against the backdrop of a sporting competition gives us a whole new palette of clichés and expectations to play with. Staging a tennis match safely on stage has been a hugely fun challenge and this time we’ve decided to add in close four-part barbershop harmonies too, sung by the hedges of Whombledun obviously.”

New Old Friends are an award-winning theatre company dedicated to creating original comedy theatre, founded in Bath in 2008 by husband and wife team Feargus Woods Dunlop and Heather Westwell. Most recently, they staged the 2022 UK tour of Crimes, Camera, Action, which premiered at the Theatre Royal Bath in August 2021. Last year they also presented a new festive farce, A Christmas Getaway, at Bath’s Ustinov Studio (13 December 2021 – 8 January 2022) which was highlighted as one of inews’ Top Christmas shows for 2021. 2020 saw New Old Friends release the first in a new audio drama series Comedy Whodunnits For Your Ears, with Crimes Against Christmas (OnComm Award winner) charting at number 2 in the Apple iTunes Fiction chart, as well as featuring on BBC Radio 4's Front Row. Recent instalments also include the original podcast form of Crimes On Centre Court, as well as Crimes Of A Country Garden and Crimes, Clues and Christmas. 

Earlier in 2022, New Old Friends were awarded the Bath Life Arts Award, having previously been awarded the Creative Bath Award for Writing in 2017 and 2018. The company’s previous stage shows include six instalments of the hugely popular Crimes… series of comedy thrillers, including 2019’s spring hit Crimes On The Nile and Crimes On The Coast, which played the Theatre Royal Bath in May and September 2019 respectively. In 2019, family shows presented by New Old Friends included their adaptation of Anthony Horowitz’s The Falcon’s Malteser, which enjoyed a six-week run at London’s Vaults Theatre, where it was highlighted by The Guardian as a Critics Choice for Best Family Show; and Swiss Family Robinson (Top 40 Christmas shows 2019, inews) which premiered at The Core at Corby Cube.

Crimes On Centre Court appears at the Theatre Royal Bath from Tuesday 24 May to Saturday 28 May. Tickets are on sale at the Theatre Royal Bath Box Office on 01225 448844 and online at 




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