"the gross and scope of my opinion ..." Hamlet I,1.
Wednesday, May 29, 2013
ALL-ENGLAND THEATRE FESTIVAL
Area Semi-Final at the Cramphorn Theatre
rare chance to see, in Chelmsford, two one-act plays vying for a
place in the England final.
two pieces had much in common: both two-handers, both depicting a man
and a woman in unconventional circumstances, both original plays
which involved the author in the production.
Runnymede Drama Group in Susie Kimnell's In The Name Of Love. Set in
a shabby US motel [the excellent set by John Godliman won the special
Stage Presentation trophy] it featured a remarkable performance by
Kimnell as Bethany, trapped in an abusive relationship, with Paul
Foster as the man she's been with for ten years. We are in Blackbird
territory here, and the difficult theme was uncompromisingly but
sensitively handled by director Judith Dolley.
written and directed for Stretch Theatre Company by Simon Mawdesley,
was a much more light-hearted piece, though the situation was far
from comic, with Caroline Petheridge's Fiona bound and gagged in her
suburban home by "not much of a tough guy" Martin Bedwell.
Plenty of suspense, immaculately timed dialogue.
impossible to choose between two such different pieces. Fortunately
that task fell not to me but to Arthur Rochester, who sent Housebound
through to the Final in Dorset.