Sometimes a one liner in a show really gets you. You feel your shoulders shake, tears fall on your cheek, you simply can’t hold it in any longer... And you burst out laughing.
Whether you’re going to see a comedy or there is a comic element to the play, it might be as simple as a look, an action or a line that just has you rolling in the aisles.
It was Shakespeare who said ‘With mirth and laughter let old wrinkles come’ so let’s embrace some of the funniest lines in theatre!
I asked my fellow tweeters what their favourite lines were that really made them laugh out loud and this is what they said.
1. ‘I don’t know why you can’t just teach us history instead of harping on the past.’ - Wicked (Apollo Victoria Theatre)
One of the West Ends best loved musicals. Spoken by G(ar)linda in history class, there are many brilliant lines in Wicked, but this one is one of my favourites.
2. ‘You’re big enough – I mean, capable enough – to defend yourself!’ - Boeing Boeing
Written by French Playwright Marc Camoletti, set in the 1960s. Swinging bachelor Bernard is engaged to 3 stewardesses, who are unaware of each other. Suddenly all 3 are in town and catastrophe ensues.
3. ‘Walk like a man? As opposed to what, a woman?’ - Jersey Boys (Piccadilly Theatre)
Musical based on Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons. Tommy questions one of their most infamous song titles.
4. ‘He’s never met a Princess but he knows a lot of Queens.’ – Gods and Monsters
Currently at Southwark Playhouse, based on the novel Father of Frankenstein by Christopher Bram. It tells the story of Frankenstein director James Whale forgotten by the studios and recluse, he finds an unlikely friend in a handsome new gardener.
5. Ruth: 'Was she more physically attractive than I am?' Charles: 'That was a very tiresome question, dear, and fully deserves the wrong answer.' – Blithe Spirit
You can always rely on Noël Coward for some of the funniest, witty quips. Angela Lansbury starred in this brilliant production last year which is now on tour in North America.
6. ‘Don’t quibble Sybil’ – Private Lives
Another Noël Coward favourite. The roles most recently played by Toby Stephens and Anna Chancellor in a critically acclaimed production at the Gielgud. It was hard to pick just one from this fabulous comedy about a married couple who fall back in love with their ex’s.
7. ‘It was six hours. I don’t even like to have sex and eat bacon for six hours.’ – Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (Savoy Theatre)
The musical caper about two fraudsters who are determined to outdo each other. Starring Robert Lindsey, this dazzlingly funny show is sadly about to finish next month, get tickets while you can.
8. ‘You look like Ava Gardner on a massive bender.’ – Sunny Afternoon (Harold Pinter Theatre)
The swinging new Kinks musical that tells the story of the bands rise to fame. Their run at the Harold Pinter Theatre keeps getting extended to rave reviews and is quickly becoming a West End favourite.
9. ‘It all turns out well.’ ‘How?’ ‘I don’t know; it’s a mystery.’ – Shakespeare In Love (Noël Coward Theatre)
Currently winning numerous awards, based on the hit film. A young Shakespeare is wowing audiences night after night in this funny and joyous love story, there’s even a bit with a dog!
10. ‘How do you know you’re God?’ ‘Because when I pray, I find that I am talking to myself.’ – The Ruling Class.
James McAvoy starred in this black comedy as a paranoid schizophrenic with a messiah complex. There are many laugh out loud moments and this darkly wonderful production is definitely a must see.
Thank you to everyone who contributed, if you have any other chortle favourites please let me know.
Please note: Opinions expressed on the londontheatredirect.com blog are those of the relevant contributors, not of London Theatre Direct Ltd, its owners or staff. London Theatre Direct Ltd is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by contributors.