Charlotte follows in star dad’s footsteps

Charlotte Dawson, appearing in A Bedfull of Foreigners at Chesterfield's Pomegranate Theatre
Charlotte Dawson, appearing in A Bedfull of Foreigners at Chesterfield's Pomegranate Theatre

The daughter of one of British best-loved comedians, the legendary Les Dawson, is continuing the family tradition of making people laugh by starring in a touring play which opens in Chesterfield this week.

Actress and model Charlotte Dawson plays the sensual Simone in the fast-paced farce A Bedfull of Foreigners, which the Pomegranate Theatre is hosting until Saturday.

Charlotte was just eight months old when her father Les died suddenly of a heart attack in 1993. He made his television debut on the talent show Opportunity Knocks in 1967 and became a prominent comic on British television for the rest of his life. Les will be remembered for the skilful way he could play a piano – so far off key that whilst you recognised what the tune was – you struggled to remember the “proper” version it, and for his deadpan humour, usually at the expense of the mother-in-law. He will also be fondly remembered for his famous sketches with Roy Barraclough where they took the part of two old women, “Cissy” and “Ada”, who put the world to rights.

Now the 19-year old daughter of the comic legend is embarking on her own career in the entertainment industry, with the aim of making Dad proud and entertaining audiences along the way.

Charlotte is no stranger to show business and in 2010-11 played the title role in Aladdin at the Empire Theatre in Consett for Pantoni Pantomimes, and also played ‘Sammy’ in the northern black comedy film ‘Rough & Ready’ for Big Cheese Films.

In addition to her acting work, Charlotte is also a model and has been featured in Hello Magazine, OK Magazine, Celebs On Sunday, and many daily newspapers to name but a few.

Charlotte is in good company in her latest project as the show also stars Kylie Butler, daughter of comic Dave Butler, who was a regular on the 1970s TV show The Comedians. While the fun-filled farce also stars popular comedy actor Damian Williams, and host of Sky One’s Are You Smarter Than Your Ten Year Old?. Damian has appeared in well over 100 touring farces and comedies throughout the UK over the past few years and his ability to ad-lib and interact with the audience has made him a firm favourite.

Set in a rundown hotel in a quiet French village near the German Border, A Bedfull of Foreigners is a fast paced farce that has the feel of ’Allo ’Allo and Fawlty Towers, and is packed with confrontations, mistaken identities and hasty cover-ups.

An English couple, Stanley and Brenda Parker, think themselves lucky to have found a room for the night on the eve of the village festival, but not for long…when other guests arrive, booked into the same room, things get a little complicated!

As a crazy night ensues, Stanley finds himself lowering an attractive girl, stark naked, from the window, the room’s radiator is hanging from a rope near the ceiling and figures dressed as nuns and monks are rushing in and out.

Then there’s the hotel manager who has an eye for the ladies, and his beer-swilling assistant to contend with, and you have a laughter-ladened British farce with plenty of continental colour.

A Bedfull of Foreigners runs at the Pomegranate from Tuesday to Saturday, January 17-21, at 7.30pm with matinees on Wednesday at 2pm and Saturday at 3pm.

For a review on the play, see this week’s Derbyshire Times.