In 1910 the unknown Charlie Chaplin and Stan Laurel set sail for New York as part of Fred Karno's famous music hall troupe. On this journey, Charlie and Stan shared a cabin and then spent two years together touring North America, with Stan as Charlie’s understudy. Stan returned home, later finding success with his soulmate Oliver Hardy. Charlie developed his Little Tramp character and within five years became one of the most famous figures in the world.
In Charlie Chaplin’s highly detailed autobiography Stan Laurel is never mentioned.
Stan talked about Charlie all his life.
Playing fast and loose with the facts and with an original piano score composed by Mercury Award Nominee Zoe Rahman played live each night, The Strange Tale of Charlie Chaplin and Stan Laurel is no nostalgic bio-drama, but a hilarious and deeply moving homage to two men who changed the world of comedy forever.
Co-commissioned by London International Mime Festival
Written and Directed by Paul Hunter
With additional material from the company
Designed by Ioana Curelea (Naomi Wilkinson Award for Stage Design 2019)
Lighting Design by Aideen Malone
Composer Zoe Rahman
Song Arrangements by Sophie Cotton
Physical Comedy Consultant Jos Houben
From an idea by Irene Cotton
The Naomi Wilkinson Award for Stage Design is kindly supported by the Charles Mason and Naomi Wilkinson Foundation.
The events in this play are fictional. This play is certainly not endorsed by the estates of Charlie Chaplin, Stan Laurel or anyone else for that matter!
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