THE first ever stage version of BBC series ‘The Navy Lark’ docks in Redditch this coming weekend.
Dead Ringers impersonator James Hurn stars in a salute to the popular radio sitcom at the Palace Theatre on Saturday, March 21.
The long-running programme which is often re-run on BBC Radio 4 Extra, has starred in the past stars like Ronnie Barker, Jon Pertwee, Leslie Phillips, Dennis Price and Stephen Murray.
James, who is joined by Richard Usher and Mark Earby for the re-creation of three series one episodes, can’t wait to take part in the tribute.
“I am very excited to be part of this tour as I grew up listening to shows such as The Navy Lark and I am fulfilling one of the items on my bucket list by portraying wonderful actors like Leslie Phillips and Jon Pertwee,” he said.
I*t won’t be the first time James has stepped out from behind the microphone.
His CV includes Steven Spielberg’s Band of Brothers, BBC1 drama Doctors and solo stage show Hancock and Co – which has enjoyed many sell-out performances – as well as other radio work like Radio 4’s Looking for Oil Drum Lane.
Having a knack for impersonating people came at an early age for the star who nevertheless studied classical acting at LAMDA – the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art – where he graduated in 1999.
It was not until after ‘a few quiet years’ that it came back to the fore when he auditioned for the hit Radio 4 comedy show Dead Ringers.
“Voice work came naturally to me, I had a very good ear,” he said.
“I could just listen to someone talking and would be able to imitate their voice and facial expressions.”
Now a polished impersonator of the likes of Donald Trump, Robin Williams, Jack Nicholson and Michael Caine, he has turned to The Navy Lark after a string of stage successes.
Originally launched in 1959, The Navy Lark is a classic British radio comedy set onboard the fictional HMS Troutbridge.
Packed with glorious accents and lots of innuendo it promises to be a hoot from beginning to end.
It’s curtains up at 7.45pm and tickets are £16.50 available from the Palace Theatre box office in person or on 01527 65203 or buy online at www.redditchpalacetheatre.co.uk/