Author(s): Nikolai Gogol
This version of A Government Inspector is a Yorkshire take on Gogol's 1836 fantastical Russian satire. The setting is here transposed to a small northern town in the twenty-first century, geographically and culturally remote from the centre of government. Into a small Pennine town a mysterious stranger is mistaken for a government inspector. Fearing discovery of their corrupt goings-on, the town's unscrupulous councillors attempt to ingratiate themselves. Bribes, backhanders and brown envelopes abound, and the young chap, who has an eye for a quick buck, takes full advantage with hilarious results. Deborah McAndrew's version of A Government Inspector goes beyond literal translation, but is absolutely faithful to Gogol's stated intention to peel away the surface layers of ordinary people and expose the corruption beneath. It's exuberant, brilliantly witty and original, and audiences will revel in the references to government officials' expenses claims and women's beach volley ball...Northern Broadsides, one of the country's finest and best-loved touring theatre companies, breathes life and vigour into this nearly 200-year-old story.
Absurdly funny, clever and strangely familiar, this feels to be the next One Man Two Guvnors. The production premieres at Harrogate Theatre from 7 - 22 September before embarking on an English national tour until December 1st.
Into a small Pennine town a mysterious stranger is mistaken for a government inspector. Fearing discovery of their corrupt goings-on, the town's unscrupulous councillors attempt to ingratiate themselves. Bribes, backhanders and brown envelopes abound, and the young chap, who has an eye for a quick buck, takes full advantage with hilarious results.
A quick thumbs-up for the latest touring show from Northern Broadsides - a nifty Northern reworking, complete with brass-band accompaniment, of Gogol's A Government Inspector by Deborah McAndrew. Toffee-nosed civil servant (Jon Trenchard, winningly camp) plunges into the realm of corrupt local officialdom, to increasingly tangled - if ever more laboured - effect. "He spends the whole time in the pub and pays for everything on expenses - he must be from the Government," runs one typically whip-sharp line. A hoot. -- Dominic Cavendish Daily Telegraph 20121010 carried through with such intelligence, verve, imagination and consistency - not to mention clockwork precision! ... The play is thoroughly Yorkshirised, but stays close to the original in the sequence of main speeches and events - even the naming of characters, though most of us would accept Tony Belcher and Luke Pickles as proper Yorkshire names. -- Ron Simpson Whatsonstage.com 20120913 Deborah McAndrew's tight script weaves in some fantastic current references from the government's alleged love of pasties to means-testing but the piece has a timeless quality to it - it could've been set any time over the last 40 years and would have been as relevant. -- Steve Stubbs Backstagepass.biz 20120914
Deborah McAndrew's first break as a writer came in 2004 when Northern Broadsides produced her adaptation of The Bells by Leopold Lewis. Deborah's adaptation of Oliver Twist (directed by Josette Bushell-Mingo) played at the Octagon Theatre, Bolton as their 2009/10 Christmas show. Her play, Flamingoland premiered at the New Vic Theatre, Newcastle-under-Lyme in 2008.