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Review: Waylaid

Waylaid by David J Harrison is a play, on the surface, about three different walking parties, part way through their hike
of the Pennine Way. They have stopped at ‘The Hall’, a privately-run hostel, to bed down for the night. However,
this is actually a comedy farce about love rivalry, mistaken identities and sweet revenge.

I thought this was written expertly by a local writer with a great set of characters, a plot with twists and turns, and a
lot of laughs. Well done to Frank Stamp and Barry Nicholls who co-produced the piece, and all the technical and backstage team, for bringing it all to life so successfully for
the audience.

The play opened with a silhouette of a hiker in the doorway
of the hostel, in a heroic pose, and along with the Star Wars theme music, this instantly set the mood for a fun night ahead.

First of all, we met William Hooke and Sam Knight, brothers-in-law who are on the walk raising money for charity. The sour relationship between these two is quickly captured in a humorous way; David Underwood plays William perfectly; with a sense of self-righteousness and chauvinism. Frank Stamp plays Sam with a wonderful sense of wit and warmth.

We then met the stoic owner of the hostel Mrs Keele who
was convincingly and perfectly played by Angela Ingall who portrayed this hard faced, strong naval lady and then later,
I loved drunk Mrs Keele even better!

Another pair of walkers to arrive were Erica and Liz, a friendship played well by Donnamarie Stamp and Maxine Goldstone. Erica quickly realises that William is an old flame who left her for money, she and Liz then conjure a plan to seek revenge and this is where hilarity ensued!

The plan included the loveable Dick and Dora, played adorably by David Cox and Gaby Hardwick. A long standing, married couple who have never had a night apart, their showy love and sickly-sweet words to each other were really funny. A highlight was the appearance of Dick in matching nightwear to Dora (all part of Erica’s plan).

To complete the cast of hikers we also had Chino, played by James Gill who made some of the funniest moments really stand out for the audience.

Eventually, the plan comes together and all the wrongs that William has done to his ex-flame and his brother-in-law are put to right as he sits in his boxers, tied to a chair. The cast leave the stage, William declares that it can’t get much worse, cue a drunk Mrs Keele in a fetching nightgown ready to seduce the tied-up William. A great finish to a witty and clever play.


Reviewed by Victoria Evans


The Rise and Fall of Little Voice
by Jim Cartwright

Friday 18th May to Friday 25th May 2018, 7:30pm

Blown fuses, real and metaphorical, punctuate the action with flashes of pent up energy in this acclaimed play. The diminutive heroine frequently plunges the dilapidated house she shares with her alcoholic mother into darkness by playing her dead father's records at a volume matched only by the soulful power of her vocal impressions. Little Voice has a hidden talent: she can emulate every chanteuse from Judy Garland to Edith Piaf. She hides in her room, crooning and dreaming of love, while her disheveled mother mistakes a seedy agent's interest as affection rather than enthusiasm for the gold mine buried in her daughter's throat. This is an engaging fairy tale of despair, love and finally hope as LV finds a voice of her own.

Click here for booking information.



2017-2018 Season

Retford Little Theatre is pleased to annouce our 77th
Season of plays will open with the farce The Decorator
by Donald Churchill, and will conclude with the acclaimed
play The Rise and Fall of Little Voice by Jim Cartwright.

The Matchmaker (Thornton Wilder), The Perfect Murder (Shaun McKenna) and Waylaid (David J Harrison) complete the season's line up.

Further details of all the plays in the 2017-18 season, including ticket information, can be found here.