According to Socrates, a good wife is what makes a good marriage, and a bad wife is what makes a philosopher.

Everyone has a belief about marriage, and positive or negative, the institution is apparently here to stay. Playwright Alan Ayckbourn wrote Bedroom Farce about it in the 1970s and it's being performed for the first time in Rotorua at the Shambles Theatre, opening tonight.

The stage is set with three bedrooms and three couples in different stages of married life: From the joy of the newlyweds; to the unshakeable lifelong partnership; and then to the couple dealing with sickness mid-marriage. Enter a fourth couple who manage to create havoc in each relationship and you have the makings of an hilarious comedy.

"Alan Ayckbourn writes about people, their relationships and about life. Often you will see his plays and see a bit of your own life. He sticks the knife in and gives it a twist," said director Remo Royall Malcolm.


The play deals with very real topics of faithfulness, deceit and forgiveness while keeping the audience in stitches. "This play is very, very funny. People will be able to have a laugh about their relationships," she said.

Not only will the script entertain, Bedroom Farce was written in the 1970s and the Rotorua production remains true to the era, offering a blast from the past in set and costume design.


* What: Bedroom Farce

* Where: Shambles Theatre

* When: Tonight until May 7

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* How much: Adult $26, senior $23, student $15, member $20. Door sales only.