THE madcap characters and antics of Cafe Rene will be brought to life this week - and audience members are invited to join in the fun.

Blackburn Drama Club will be recreating the popular 1980s’ sitcom Allo Allo from tomorrow at Thwaites Empire Theatre, until Saturday. In this stage version of the BBC TV show, hapless cafe owner Rene and his wife Edith, played by Robin Brown and Anne Starks, are desperately trying to keep for themselves a priceless portrait - the ‘fallen Madonna with the big boobies’ - stolen by the Nazis which is stored in a sausage in their cellar.

Add to that, the Britsh airmen in hiding, played by Mark Duxbury and Robert Talbot, Rene’s liaison’s with his waitresses Yvette and Mimi, (Jaqui Mooney and Debbie Hart), and Michelle of the Resitance (Jenny Hodkinson), and laughs are guaranteed. A drama club spokesman said: “Communications with London through a wireless disguised as a cockatoo add to the many embarrassments Rene endures.

“Matters come to a head with news that the Fuhrer is to visit the town and the cafe becomes filled with tricksters intending to impersonate Hitler before the event.

“Rene will need all the wit he can muster to save his cafe and his life.

“And as we recreate the mayhem of Cafe Rene on stage, we hope to see some of our audience members getting in the spirit and coming to see the play dressed as some of their favourite characters from the show - think French maids, British airmen, the Resistance, and more.”

Also in the cast are Andrew Smith as the Colonel, Kate Roberts as Helga, David Batterby as Alberto and Martyn Pugh as Herr Flick, with Jeff Moxham as Crabtree and Brian Whittaker as Lelerc. Plus Tom Haworth, Jonathan Mallinson, Christine Haworth and Dylan Allcock.

  • Tickets for the 7.30pm performances cost £9 from the Thwaites Empire box office on 01254 685500.