Home | News | Features | Hyndburn History | Sport | Food & Drink | Lifestyle | Pets | Business | Columnists
Tel: 01254 304079
Email: info@acornnews.co.uk
Charities | Classified Adverts | Hobbies | Contact Acorn News | Community Events | Motoring



The new digital version of The Importance of Being Earnest had its online premier on Monday April 19th and will continue until May 14th.

The action was filmed in the Lawrence Batley Theatre in Huddersfield and co-produced by The Dukes in Lancaster. It is an adaptation of the Wilde classic written by Yasmeen Khan and directed by Mina Anwar, who is also in the cast.

This version moves the action from Worthing and the South of England to the cobbled streets and back yards of the North and features a bevy of well-known names in its cast, ranging from classical actors to stand up comedians.

Algy, or Algernon Moncrief is still there, but as an actor in Romantic Comedies who is asked to mentor up and coming Jamil/Earnest, and this is how they first meet.

Under the name of Earnest, Jamil has been doing an online vlog about the North of England, complete with his flat cap. Instead of Lady Bracknell, we have Ms Begum as the overbearing matriarch looking for a suitable suitor for her daughter Gul, ably played by Mina Anwar and Nikki Patel respectively.
In another change to the original, Earnest is not found in a handbag at Victoria Station but in a holdall in Sainsbury’s car park in Huddersfield.

We still have a Miss Prism but in this version she is a mentor, guru and Tarot Card master. She is beautifully played by Melanie Marshall.

On paper this shouldn’t really work, but I am happy to say that it did. It still had all the comedy and some of the farcical flavour of the Wilde version but with the technology of the digital age.

I suppose it’s theatre meets TV meets technology, and at a time when theatres are empty and struggling, it was refreshing to see the inside of one again.

One hilarious scene is when Ms Begum grills Earnest about his prospects and we see a metre whirring around indicating his score in the high minuses.

Gurjeet Singh plays Jamil/Earnest to perfection and maintains an air of confusion throughout. Tom Dixon as Algy Moncrief plays opposite him really convincingly. There are some subtle one-liners in there too. You also get the benefit of Miss Prism’s wisdom as she relates old Chinese, Indian and Irish proverbs which all sound very much like gameshow catchphrases, such as: The old Indian proverb: “Look what you could have won.”

Zoe Iqbal is outstanding as Jamil’s sister/cousin/niece. Her facial expressions are wonderful and I loved her delivery.

There are cameo appearances by Hugh Dennis who plays Tony; a flatulent TV daytime host and the lovely Sindhu Vee playing his co-host.

The screenplay is well written by Yasmeen Khan and the whole thing tied together beautifully by Mina Anwar. It was lovely to see her acting again also. I was lucky enough to witness her performance in Shirley Valentine at The Library Theatre in Bolton and thought she was sensational. Sometimes we forget what a great comedy actor she is.

So there it is. If you would like to see it for yourself, you can do so until May 14th by following this link and booking your ticket. You won’t be disappointed. https://importanceofbeingearnest.com/

© Peter Jones 2021


back to top


© Acorn News 2014             Privacy Policy | Terms & Conditions | Contact Us Designed by PetersWebPixels