32 The Cemetery Club by Ivan Menchell

Directed by John Covey

17-19th February, 2015, Felpham Village Hall

SYNOPSIS

CAST

IdaDi Hiblen
LucilleChrissie Lester
DorisJenny Dean
SamTrevor Roman
MildredSue Bartlett

PRODUCTION

DirectorJohn Covey
Assistant Director & PromptSandy Knight
Stage ManagerJudy Roberts

The Regis Players
The Cemetery Club
Reviewed by: Jose Harrison on Friday 17th April 2015
Venue: Felpham Village Hall
Type of Production: Play
Director: John Covey

SHOW REPORT

This is a great little play for any society to perform as it has plenty of comedy, drama and pathos. Regis Players made the most of all of this, their productions are always of an excellent standard, and this play was no exception. The story tells of three Jewish American widows whose husbands are buried in the local cemetery. They meet up for tea once a month on a social basis and then visit their spouses for a ‘chat’. Each one has a special story to tell, and they are all very different characters. Doris (Jenny Dean) takes very fervent care of her husband’s grave, cutting down ivy and keeping it tidy and is the least able to move on and accept that she is alone and might do something about it. The other two are secretly looking for that special someone to come along, and he does in the form of Sam (Trevor Roman) who visits his wife’s grave regularly. Although he is hotly pursued by Lucille (Chrissie Lester) he rather favours Ida (Di Hiblen) and they strike up a relationship. Lucille, a compulsive shopper with an incredible taste in fashion, has no intention of giving up the battle and hatches a plan to break up the new friends. They are all invited to an old colleagues wedding and are asked to be bridesmaids and when Sam asks Ida to go with him, the other two feel a bit left out and put this plan into action. This is when we meet the fifth member of the cast Mildred (Sue Bartlett), a small part very well played as the one who actually ‘catches’ Sam, but can she keep him? The three widows have a hilarious time at the wedding getting very drunk. Their arrival home afterwards, with an incredible picnic stashed away in a hand bag and muff, was one of the best scenes I have ever seen depicting delightfully over indulged characters laughing, singing, dancing and giggling uncontrollably. They all gave outstanding performances depicting their very different characters and Trevor was every inch the modest man who didn’t actually set out to catch a partner but rather enjoyed it when he did. I thought the set was very clever, and the gravestones were simple but worked well. The play was very entertaining, and the accents of all the characters were first class. My congratulations to director John Covey for an excellent show.

National Operatic and Dramatic Association
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