Founded in 1934 the award-winning Circle Players perform three plays a year (February, June and October) at the Aldridge youth theatre. Play on! is the second production of the season.
Written by Rick Abbot, this comedy tells the story of an amateur theatre group, who are trying to “put on” an original murder mystery play, entitled A murder most foul. However, this is made very difficult by the constant revision of the script by the plays eccentric author, Phyllis Montague. Phyllis is played in this production with just the right amount of eccentricity by Margaret Jeffcoat.
Director of A Murder most foul “Gerry” (Helen Gilfoyle) tries her best to manage the chaotic cast who forget their lines, argue with each other, and storm off stage in fits of temper. Adding to the pandemonium of the production is back stage woman of all trades Louise Peary (Carol Grice) and stage manager Aggie Manville (Jenny Culligan).
The cast of A Murder most foul create the mayhem on stage as they unsuccessfully try to create a period murder mystery, complete with failing props, ineffective sound effects and a drunken cast member.
Lord and Lady Dudley are the hosts of the weekend in their country home. George Georgiou epitomises the character of the Lord of the manor and Anne Troman caused me to dissolve into fits of giggles as she ran off the stage to walk on during one of the scenes.
Young Doris the maid, played with excellent comedic timing by the delightful Amy Tregellis, runs on to the stage to deliver her messages breathlessly to Lord and Lady Dudley, before rushing off again.
The villain in this play is Doctor Rex Forbes and we received a marvellous comedic performance from Lee Tregellis in this role.
The romantic element is brought to life by John Richardson as Stephen Sellers and Clair Tregellis as Diana Lassiter. I really enjoyed the dead pan monotone delivery of lines by John and Diana was skilfully played, with perfect comedic timing, by Clair.
With many laugh out loud moments, director Clive Barlow has created a high-quality piece of comedy theatre. The script was delivered with excellent timing by a very talented cast who have excellent chemistry with each other and who worked as a team to deliver a very enjoyable performance.
Play on! ran at the Aldridge youth theatre from the 13th -16th June 2018. For more information on the Circle Players visit their website.
Theatretastic rating 4/5:
We say: “The talented cast of The Circle Players have created a high-quality, laugh out loud piece of comedy theatre!”