Review: The Thrill of Love
I must start by saying that this play is a must see! To have
a wonderfully written play, about a story familiar to us all,
with a talented cast and director, on our doorstep, is such
The true story of Ruth Ellis; the last woman in Britain to be hanged is explored in this piece.
The play shows us the facts, as well as probable truths,
from a defence point of view through the narration and questioning by DI Jack Gale played by Robert Warburton. Robert lead the audience comfortably and expertly though
the play and gave the detective
a 'film noir' feel which complemented the stylistic quality of the play.
Set in the round, and often in flashback, the play breaks
down the fourth wall and as a member of the audience,
I felt as if I were part of the jury, with the responsibility
of judging the evidence.
Coming to the conclusion that Ruth should have lived
makes the final scenes very emotive and powerful,
especially as you see this emotion on the faces of the
audience members sitting opposite you.
Ruth Ellis was played by Sarah Woodwards who gave us
a thrilling and very convincing performance. She managed
to show the many sides of this complicated woman;
humour, insecurity, ambition, stubbornness,
and tender heart.
Joan Young gives a fantastic performance as Sylvia Shaw;
the hard but secretly warm hearted gentleman’s club manageress. Joan is so convincing and really helps to set
the scene of club life in the 50s. Her ability to act so
naturally make the final scenes with Ruth very touching.
Ruth’s friend Vickie Martin is full of fun, ambition and
naivety which is acted out expertly by Beckie Ragdale,
has some great scenes with fast paced delivery and humour with Ruth.
Lesley Harris plays Doris Judd, the help; she helps clean
up the club but also continually cleans up Ruth’s mess and becomes her confidante. Lesley is endearing and funny and offers a lighter side to the whole production, giving a great balance.
The carefully selected music, which punctuates each scene, adds to the atmosphere of the era very successfully and
I loved that the music became a part of each scene through actors singing or using the record player. There were also what sounded like gunshots and photo flashgun sounds between key moments, and this along with the flashing
lights was very effective, adding to the non-naturalistic
style of the set and staging.
Well done to director Donnamarie Stamp for making all of these decisions as I think this play was expertly produced. Donnamarie has created a piece where stylistic qualities
come through the design and technical aspects and where actors have been coached to give this true story the justice
it deserves by acting truthfully and honestly.
Reviewed by Victoria Evans
OUR CURRENT PRODUCTION
The Thrill of Love
by Amanda Whittington
19th May to 27th May 2017, 7:30pm
A gripping drama about Ruth Ellis, the last woman to be hanged
in Britain. A divorcee with a young child to care for, Ruth works in the kind of nightclubs where there's more than just a drink on offer. The girls work hard, play hard and dream of a movie-star life. Then she meets the wealthy, womanising David, a racing driver with whom she becomes obsessed. Fame comes but not in the way she imagines. Ruth Ellis was the last woman to be hanged in Britain, convicted of the coldblooded killing of her unfaithful lover. The Thrill of Love takes a new look at the real woman behind the headlines and at the events that drive her to murder?
||Booking Tickets for The Thrill of Love
Members: 6:00-8:00pm 12/05/2017 and
10:00am-12:00 noon 13/05/2017
Non-Members: 6:00-8:00pm 15/05/2017
to 27/052017 (not Sundays)
Box Office: 01777 702002
2016-2017 Season Brochure
The Season Brochure for the forthcoming 2016-2017 season of plays is now available.
Click the image on the left
to download your copy,
or complete the form on the Contact page and we'll post one to you.