Cooking with Puccini - Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2006
Written by : Jeffrey Mayhew - Directed by : Guy Masterson - Role: Puccini
"Jeffrey Mayhew and Guy Masterson reunite after last year's successful Swift and delve into the world of opera and daytime television. Puccini (Mayhew) is a guest on Lynsey's (Lynsey Tash) modern cookery show where he uses his culinary skills to illustrate the inspiration for his operas. Along the way we scrutinise the composers charming rogue persona, his love of the female form and examine creativity, fame and morality. The modern setting (Puccini is northern) takes away nothing, simply wrapping facts in a witty delivery, stuffed with innuendo and interspersed with beautiful arias. Whether you know his work or not, it's an entertaining tale of a man who wrote music wonderfully and lived downright dastardly."
"What makes the show particularly delightful is Jeffrey Mayhew's execution of Puccini. Written not as an Italian but instead as a Yorkshireman this Puccini brings his own brand of northern humour to the stage...Mayhew is a natural performer and brings his gifted but just as promiscuous character to life excellently. As well as being effortlessly engaging he has a good singing voice and is as equally at ease behind the piano as he is in the kitchen"
"Jeffrey Mayhew not only portrays Puccini on stage, but also researched and wrote the piece. Every quote heard is taken from letters and diaries, the wealth of material gleaned from his research is not fully covered in the show. He has developed his characters with northern accents and although this and the studio setting are fiction you are completely drawn into the illusion. Mayhew plays the piano sings, answers the probing personal questions, cooks and virtually makes love to every woman in the audience. His portrayal of the character is totally believable...This show is totally enjoyable, whilst being educational and entertaining, It's beautifully written & performed"
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