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May 2017 - Party Piece by Richard Harris

It was very moving to see how events developed as Roma became more agitated as their invited house-warming guests cancelled over the course of the evening. The house owner next door, Mrs Hinson, was played by Betsy Rimmer, who did an amazing job portraying a dotty old lady, wielding a Zimmer frame, and obviously not very enamoured with her daughter-in-law, Jennifer, played by Angela Sloan. The relationship between Mrs Hinson and Jennifer was quite hilarious as there was obviously no love lost between the two characters and this was expressed so well between these two with comical animosity. Then came the very placid son of Mrs Hinson and Jennifer's husband, David, played by the newcomer to WCDS, Colin Penfold. My heart went out to him as David tried to make peace between his mother and Jennifer, to no avail! As the 'party' gets into full swing, we were introduced to the delights of John Rimmer appearing as Toby, very much a ladies' man looking for his next victim, and Janet Methley as Sandy, an extremely brightly-coloured, single, party-goer, loving life. These two characters added another depth to the play, and continued with those fabulous witty lines. from Amanda Hislop

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Review

In May, audiences were once again thoroughly entertained by the latest production from West Chiltington Dramatic Society, Party Piece, by Richard Harris. This was a very fast-paced and funny play set in the back gardens of feuding neighbours. The set was, as always, spectacular and very realistic, and an especially wonderful achievement given the relatively small size of the stage compared to what needed to be set out. This was a very demanding play as there were lots of fast one-liners, and so much rushing on and off stage, but the cast coped very well. John Pounder, as Michal Smethurst, did extremely well, upholding the character of the snobbish but pompous doctor and owner of his new house, accompanied by his rather anxious wife, Roma, played by Penny Walker.

 

The cast really worked well together, with a very difficult task of fast delivery of lines, a huge number of props to cope with and numerous dashing in and out of doors, but still managed to create an extremely funny, entertaining and captivating evening. Miq Kelland, director, has done a great job bringing the actors together to produce this fast-moving and well-delivered play, supported by his assistant, Jennifer Steward. Congratulations go to a fantastic set, brilliant lighting and sound effects and a well-organised team in coordinating all aspects of this production. Once again, West Chiltington Dramatic Society has put on a thoroughly enjoyable and challenging production. Well done to everyone, and thank you to all involved.

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