WW2 comedy theatre lands in Lancashire

A WW2-era comedy theatre show that lovingly pokes fun at British eccentricities and the American troops who tried to understand them is coming to Lancashire this November.

“Instructions For American Servicemen in Britain”, from company Fol Espoir, will travel to Arkholme Village Hall on Friday 4 November at 7.30pm, Old School Hall in Simonstone on Saturday 5 November at 7.30pm and Lowther Pavilion, Lytham on Sunday 6 November at 4pm.

Tickets for the show, which is suitable for ages 12 and above, can be booked directly from the venues by calling 07519 281305 for Arkholme, 01200 428 742 for Simonstone or 01253 794221 for Lytham.

Issued in 1942 by the American War Office, ‘Instructions for American Servicemen in Britain’ was a pamphlet that aimed to prepare GIs for the country that awaited them, and defuse Nazi propaganda attempts to split the allies apart. They have been described as an ‘Ordnance survey map’ of the country’s psyche, and since being re-published in 2005, have become a treasured reminder of both the country’s finest hour, and its strangest eccentricities.

“The British don’t know how to make a good cup of coffee. You don’t know how to make a good cup of tea. It’s an even swap.”

Inspired by this snapshot of wartime Britain, theatre company Fol Espoir has joined forces with sketch-comedy trio The Real MacGuffins (whose credits include ‘Miranda’, Radio 4’s ‘Sketchorama’ and ‘Lee Nelson’s Well Funny People’) to create a joyous night of nostalgic and whimsical entertainment.

The show’s director John Walton said:

“I stumbled upon ‘The Instructions…’ in Waterstone’s a few years ago, and I’ve been wanting to make a show based on them ever since. They’re such an endearing and loving snapshot of the country at a unique moment in its history. At the same time, they just seemed perfect for comic exploration.”

The show is structured around a training session for newly arrived GIs and will appeal to fans of classic sitcoms like ‘Dad’s Army’, history buffs, and anyone looking for a fun night out.

The three shows form part of Spot On Lancashire’s autumn season of touring, taking professional arts events to rural venues and libraries across the county.

For more information about all the shows visit our what’s on page, call Sue Robinson on 01254 660360 or email hello@spotonlancashire.co.uk.