Sunday, 22 May 2011

It runs in the family

Fun for all, thanks to Old Buckenham Players
The blog editor would like to thank Geogette Vale from Wymondham Players for this review of “It Runs in the Family” performed by  Old Buckenham Players in the Village Hall on Thursday 19, Friday 20 and Saturday 21 May.
Heartfelt congratulations to Old Buckenham Players for a wonderful performance of “It Runs in the Family”, a good old traditional farce by Ray Cooney, with all the trimmings of misunderstandings and cover-ups. They were not afraid to play up to the knicker jokes and the window-ledge dramas.
It was slick and fast but I could still hear every word. The actors showed throughout that they could all master the timing for laughs and there were lots of one-liners which need full concentration to get just right.
The play is set in a hospital in the early 1980s, with a background story of a boy finding out that his real father is a pillar of society who cheated on his wife. Judging by recent news reports this story will still have relevance in the future too.
Laurence Barnett’s strong direction was clearly evident, with lots of nice visual gags added in. It was well cast with no weak links. The lead double act of Tom Key and Chris Morter, playing Dr David Mortimore and Dr Hubert Bonney, were a real treat to watch. Jennie Harrison and Sharon Butcher were also good foils as Mrs Mortimer and Nurse Tate, the lover of 18 years (and nine months) ago.
Playing young Dr Connolly gave Sam Mann the chance to show that he has got just what it takes – great promise there. Josh Francis was Leslie, the18 year old punk with a range of volatile emotions, and the pompous Sir Willoughby-Drake was played steadily and firmly by Malcolm Robertshaw. Margaret White certainly did not disappoint as Matron – not too much “Carry-on film” but very much her own comedy character.
We all enjoyed the performance of Richard Crawley playing Bill – the old man confused when it suits but coming up with well placed truths. Josh Lincoln as the Police Sergeant gave a mature comedic performance, They always say you know you are getting older when policemen look young! It was a shame that the role of Sister was such a small part as I am sure Francesca Izzo would have been able to carry a larger role. At the end of play we were treated to Chris Allen’s delightful dippy old lady.
The behind-the-scenes preparation was clearly evident too. The set worked well, with lots of doors to rush in and out of and it’s not easy to get hold of hospital trolleys and nurses uniforms in sizes to fit big blokes!
All in all, a good choice of play with a great cast and the audiences loved it.
Profits from these performances will help finance the improvement of the stage lighting system in the Village Hall. It is in urgent need of replacement, this latest show was nearly cancelled as some equipment started melting during the last rehearsals...

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