La Bête proves to be a beast of a play - extra 2010 performances added for comedy-play

Posted: 12th April 2010

A forthcoming production of the David Hirson comedy-play, La Bête, due to be performed at the Comedy Theatre in Panton Street, London, is proving to be a ticketing success with many nights close to selling-out. To this end, the venue has announced an extension to the run that will now end on Saturday 4th September.

This version of La Bête (meaning 'the beast' or 'the fool') sees three well-known faces take on the story of a royal theatre touring France in the 17th century. Mark Rylance (Jerusalem, Endgame, Much Ado About Nothing and the BAFTA-winning film The Government Inspector) plays the part of Valere, a simple street-performer whose raffish and frivolous 'qualities' irks the snooty and high-and-mighty theatre-head Elomire, played by David Hyde Pierce (Frasier's Niles Crane).

Elomire attempts to block the decision of the theatre's patron, Prince Conti, to bring in Valere and have one of his plays performed by the troupe. He fails and he, Valere and the troupe undergo a change in fortune, including the departure as sponsor by the royal princess, played by Joanna Lumley (Ab Fab, Avengers, BAFTA-winner and human/ animal rights activist). Valere and Elomire have a choice - bicker like children or buckle down to save the theatre.

Tickets for the performances start at £30 (very limited) and rise to £50.

Paul Pledger