Church Blitz, staged by Naughty Corner Productions, is a chaotically funny late night show, perfect if you’ve been to a few intense pieces of theatre earlier. This young cast energetically tells the story, and fate, of seven people taking refuge in a church from an unknown, perhaps extraterrestrial, enemy. Each one of them is somewhat suspect, and suspicious of each other.
Bursting out of Liverpool’s Edge Hill University, Church Blitz is slickly written by 2013 graduate Mike Dickinson. The space is used creatively and at a dazzling pace, and there are some great one-liners. As the six strangers shelter in the church, they warily accept another stranger into their midst. Nick Sheedy is Jude, who arrives for reasons no-one is ever sure of, and he plays the part wickedly. Warren Kettle is subtle in playing Ray, as we feel sorry for him while feeling there is something we’re missing.
Playing with great panache Samantha Walton is Blue the Nun who is not all she seems to be, just like her Irish accent and the allusion to the wine, which means more to some of us of a certain vintage – well, we once thought it was cool! The huggable Adam Nicholls, as the poet Clarence, was clearly an audience favourite, tempting one of the audience to cry out in a sorrowful “aww” when he was shot.
Callum Forbes is authoritative as The Priest, playing him in a foul-mouthed Scots accent and comically demonstrating the Scots lilt does lend itself to obscenity. Niall Ross Hogan as Sarge and Megan Bond as Ida bring us some great comic moments too, and round off a well-formed ensemble.
On a final note, I don’t believe Jammy Dodgers have ever played such a pivotal role in the history of theatre. Well worth getting to at the Festival to round off the evening or put you in party mood!