written by Joe Orton
directed by Sian Davis
It might not have been done before, it might be against his Catholic beliefs but Hal has no qualms about stashing his mother's corpse in the wardrobe. However, when Fay recommends stripping the body naked to avoid identification, Hal draws the line. He won't see his mother naked! That would be against his faith!
Wild and anarchic, this hilarious black farce embodies the subversive spirit of swinging 1960s London from which it originated. The Beatles rocked, Portobello Road rolled and, as in any period where the times are a-changing, a satirist was born; pop culture icon Joe Orton. Dubbed by The Observer 'the Oscar Wilde of Welfare State gentility', Orton's merciless swipes at a hypocritical society were as furious and acerbically witty as his Victorian predecessor's. Brutally murdered at 34 and leaving only a tragically small body of work, Orton has since become a theatre legend whose plays (including Entertaining Mr Sloane and What The Butler Saw) are constantly revived around the world.
When it was first staged in 1966, Loot shocked audiences with its satirical criticism of the Catholic Church and religious hypocrisy. In the wake of the Church's abuse scandals, the play's power to shock may have diminished but its brilliance as a dramatic invention has not. Loot remains a potent criticism of police corruption, the facade of propriety and good old-fashioned scurrilousness.