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Little theatre with big dramas
FOLLOWING the popularity of Ladies’ Day, Knutsford Little Theatre members are opening their new season with another Amanda Wittington play: Player’s Angels.
Set in 1953 in Nottingham, Amanda’s home town, the play is based on real stories of the tobacco industry, in particular of the John Player’s factory where the most coveted jobs are to be found.
The action revolves around the hopes and dreams of three young women, one not so young aunt and a factory supervisor.
By casting young actresses in lead roles, director Tina Buckley has found the ideal ensemble for this production and is also thereby continuing the encouragement that KLT gives to budding thespians.
Cyn dreams of being a beauty queen, a role tailor made for the attractive and very talented Harriet Henry (last seen as Cinderella) who, when Cyn is dreaming of a Hollywood future, produces a very accurate and impressive American accent. Will Cyn’s dreams come true; or will they be shattered?
Vee, recently back from honeymoon, is adjusting to married life with ‘my Eddie’; but will the domesticity of married life in the 50s be the paradise she is hoping for? The energetic and lively Tessa Sawyer swaps her Red Riding Hood cloak for 50s’ style dress to play her role to perfection.
Glad, is 41 and Lesley Hornsby’s sensitive and accurate portrayal of this war widow reminds us that 1953 England was still so close to the end of WW2. Glad has a secret shared with Bill, aged just 24. Riyaz Assrafally again finds himself cast in the role of a young factory supervisor and again brings his accomplished acting skills to the part.
Finally, following her prize winning role in the junior production of Bugsy Malone, Olivia Buckley brings just the right degree of vulnerable innocence to the role of Glad’s 15 year old niece, Mae, who gets caught up in the lives of the older more worldly wise women.
With only a hint of the ‘Big C’, when one of the perks of the job was the generous cigarette allowance, Player’s Angels reminds us of different social attitudes and expectations, especially for women, when many girls started work at 14 before getting married at a young age, and of a time of relative naivety with regard to emerging health issues around the evil weed just beginning to be voiced.
Tickets are on sale for £7 and where, as witnessed by last season’s sell out successes, a high standard of performance is guaranteed.
With an ingenious, authentic 50s’ set and music, costumes and props of their time, a very funny, joyous, nostalgic and, at times, touching evening is promised.