Such is the pulling power of Warkworth Drama Group that its ‘Evening of Age and Sex’ lasted three evenings - and left audiences more than satisfied.
The saucily titled show directed by Ralph Firth was largely a re-run of the group’s successful 2005 event.
The evening’s first tale centred on the lone man marooned in an old folks home – dubbed Alcatraz by his late soul mate George. Populated by doddery old ladies…… “forty years ago it would have been paradise…” it provides a solitary existence for the retired civil engineer missing his trouble-making buddy.
Slowly but surely our otherwise careful and cautious hero learns to appreciate the subtle subversive ways taught by George. The metaphorical and literal undermining of the home – and much of village’s main street - provides an unexpected denouement as the pair dig their way to extraordinary riches via the cellars of the local shop and pub and the vault of bank.
Mike Dixon, with exquisite timing, brought Mr Firth’s witty monologue to an explosive and highly satisfactory conclusion.
Ralph’s second playlet gave Gary Brown the opportunity to show off his great comedic qualities as the scheming womaniser who invents a web site for adulterers. www.youralibi.com provides subscribers with the vital information required to back up their lies little realising they are being cuckolded by the site controller who knows precisely when they are out and is therefore ideally positioned to offer amatory services to the deceived wives.
The third of Ralph’s monologues brought to the stage Tracey Young as ultra prim and proper secretary ‘Miss Reliable’. A spinster with romance – and a degree of lust - coursing through her veins, she recounts being sexually shunned in a Stockholm hotel by her boss Mr McCardle…. “Brian”, the consequent trickery to hasten his departure from the company and her effortless moving into a position very close to the firm’s owner. The audience is left in no doubt by Tracey’s terrific portrayal that she will undoubtedly end up on top in her chosen path in the business.
The final play – written by Ralph and Pru Heathcote – reveals how ageing tarts Annie and Charlie diversify from the declining business of prostitution to the new world of alternative therapy. Brains of the outfit, Charlie, excellently crafted by Steph Wilkinson, ‘invents’ a magic regenerative crystal – based on nail-varnished nutty slack – called ‘Skol lob’ which is sold to premiership football managers to help their ailing stars back to fitness. Her con gets the thumbs up from the Magpies boss whose young £multi-million Brazilian centre forward with a bad back starts scoring again.
However, his treatment needed the unique supplementary ‘add-on’ provided by bimbo Annie (Marion Giles) who’s not as dumb as she sounds. The audience was in fits as she described how her work on the star’s front rather than his back aided recovery.
The enthusiastic applause throughout the evening was testament to the professionalism, enthusiasm and hard work of the group who, once again, showed that am-dram is alive and kicking in Warkworth.