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Fans of comedy and The Goon Show are in for a treat this Autumn as SPIKE, an absurdly funny new play by Ian Hislop and Nick Newman that had its world premiere at The Watermill in January, comes to Oxford Playhouse from Tue 27 September to Sat 1 October, delving into the inner workings of Spike Milligan’s genius comedy mind.

Ian Hislop and Nick Newman commented:

It’s a privilege to take ‘SPIKE’ on tour, exploring the genius of Britain’s most inspirational and ground-breaking comedian. And of course, it’s another chance to steal all his jokes and pass them off as our own. Spike Milligan may be Goon, but he’s not forgotten.”

It’s 1950s austerity Britain, and out of the gloom comes Goon mania as men, women and children across the country scramble to get their ear to a wireless for another instalment of The Goon Show. While Harry Secombe and Peter Sellers get down to the serious business of becoming overnight celebrities, fellow Goon and chief writer Spike Milligan finds himself pushing the boundaries of comedy and testing the patience of the BBC.

Will Spike’s dogged obsession with finding the funny elevate The Goons to soaring new heights, or will the whole thing come crashing down with the stroke of a potato peeler?

Robert Wilfort (Gavin and Stacey, Bridgerton) takes the role of Spike Milligan, Patrick Warner (The Crown, One Man, Two Guvnors and Play that Goes Wrong) also joins the production to play Peter Sellers, and Jeremy Lloyd (The Comedy About a Bank Robbery, Trial by Laughter) will return to his critically acclaimed role as Harry Secombe.

The rest of the cast is comprised of TV comedienne and podcaster Margaret Cabourn-Smith (Motherland, Miranda, Buffering) who will reprise her role as Janet, James Mack (The Watermill’s TheHound of the Baskervilles, The Rivals, Macbeth and Journey’s End) reprising his role as Denis Main-Wilson / Peter Eton, Ellie Morris (The Play That Goes Wrong, Mischief Movie Night, The Comedy About A Bank Robbery for Mischief Theatre company) as June, and Robert Mountford (The Habit of Art, The Haunting of Alice Bowles for Original Theatre Company, House and Garden for The Watermill) as BBC Executive. Peter Dukes will join the company as BBC Announcer, as will Tesni Kujore as Myra, and Sam Ducane as Doctor.

Audiences can expect a ‘fast-paced, capering production’ (The Guardian, 4*) in this ‘fascinating insight into an era of British Comedy’ (West End Best Friend, 5*).