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It’s a truism that everyone is middle-class these days – but it’s not one to be observed at the performance collective Duckie’s latest Christmas supper show. Here you get what you pay for. The £14.99 proles in Lower Class (of whom I was one) get a carvery dinner, a cash bar and Carla the brassy hostess, who jollies you along through the meal and the naff tribute acts. For £40, your seat in Upper Class comes with silver service meal and operetta-singing waiters and waitresses. But beware of the third way: the £25 Middle Classes receive a faux-world-cuisine menu and “entertainment” consisting of phoney medieval poetry and bad modern dance.
Much depends on one’s willingness to get involved: not in the audience- participation sense but simply being prepared to chat with the folk at one’s table and to banter with the performers. It appeared most of my fellow Lowers had come for a raucous, chav-tastic time. Once I realised this was a period of licensed misrule and pitched in, things eased up.
This proved especially to be the case during the final third of the evening, when the curtains dividing the Classes were opened so we could all watch a succession of parodically class-based cabaret acts. Frankly, it was my mates the yobs that kept things alive. The Upper Classes were muted, and – well, I felt more than a twinge of Schadenfreude observing my reviewing colleagues in Middle Class, whose responses ranged from sheepish acquiescence to a stony refusal to yield. Because the experience is so variable, it’s hard to give a rating, but workers of the world, unite – you have nothing to lose but your inhibitions!
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