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Review | Vardy V Rooney: The Wagatha Christie Trial | The Lowry | 09/06/2023

When most of us have a spat with friends, we either work it out or move our separate ways. In the case of these two footballer’s wives however, a third option of a libel case going through the high court is the preferred option.

Part of fame and fortune is unfortunately that people may sometimes sell stories about you. When Colleen Rooney became suspicious that content from her private Instagram account were being sold to The Sun, she had a good idea of who it might be. Rooney decided to limit who could see her stories to one person, and one person only, Rebekah Vardy. When fabricated stories that only Vardy could see were leaked, Rooney had her evidence and let the world know what had happened through a viral tweet. You would think this would have been dramatic enough, but when Vardy attempted to sue Rooney for defamation the drama really began.

The case which the British press dubbed ‘Wagatha Christie’ has since been turned into a channel 4 drama, and now a stage show. Originally a one night only production, ‘Vardy V Rooney: The Wagatha Christie Trial’ is now on a UK tour, following a 6-week west end residency.

The stage is set simply as a court room with an AstroTurfed floor. This is used metaphorically to compare the famous court case to an edge of your seat football game, flanked by two on stage pundits who help further deliver this narrative. The real excitement comes from the rest of the hilarious script, which is taken verbatim from what was said in court… potentially to avoid another defamation case! Some of it is so wild, that had it not been based so precisely on what happened in court, you would think it too outrageous to believe.

This is not one purely for those like myself who eagerly followed the trial, but for anyone wanting a fun night out at the theatre. At points I was transported to the court case, with particular quotes that are still amusing now. It was clear that other audience members were less familiar, with belly laughs and gasps coming at moments that I myself was waiting for with excited anticipation.

Lucy May Barker absolutely steals the show as Rebekah Vardy. In the case, Vardy’s verbal responses to questioning were at times unbelievably absurd. Barker’s comic timing was absolute perfection, taking the verbatim nonsensical responses and turning them into hilarious one-liners which had the Lowry crowd in stitches. The dramatic reading of WhatsApp exchanges between the two leads provided some of the biggest laughs of the night. Vardy’s time on the stand makes for a highly entertaining first act. Whilst the second act is arguably weaker once Vardy’s testimony is complete, there are still plenty of laughs to be had throughout this hilarious show.

‘Vardy V Rooney: The Wagatha Christie Trial’ translates effortlessly on stage and whether you followed the story at the time or not, this is a show you won’t want to miss. See below for booking information:

Note: My ticket was gifted. Irrespective of whether a show is gifted or bought, I always ensure that my reviews are fair and based on my honest opinion alone.


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