Blithe Spirit, was a Play directed by Evelyn Earles.
Noel Coward’s hilarious supernatural comedy, Blithe Spirit comes to Holsworthy in May 2015. The play first opened in London’s West End in 1941 and has barely been off stage since.
Looking to conduct some research for his next book, writer Charles Condomine invites Madam Arcarti, a spiritualist, to his home so that he can observe what happens at a séance. He doesn’t believe that Madam Arcarti can commune with the deceased, so imagine his surprise when his first wife puts in an uninvited appearance! And the second Mrs Condomine is not at all impressed by the first Mrs Condomine’s (Elvira) ghostly arrival.
Elvira proceeds to wreak havoc in the household. To see how the story unfolds, book your tickets now for Noel Coward’s quintessential British comedy.
Director Evelyn Earles said: “We have a great cast for this excellent play, featuring some HATS regulars and some new talent. We put on three productions a year, one of which is our annual post-Christmas pantomime. If you’ve never seen one of our productions, I urge you to come along and give it a go. You may even fancy joining us in the future – either on-stage or behind the scenes. As a community theatre group, we always welcome new members.”
Tickets are on sale now from the theatre box office in Bodmin Street, Holsworthy, from 10am to 3pm (not Sundays) or call 01409 253826 during the same hours. The play runs on Thursday, Friday and Saturday for two consecutive weeks, 21 to 30 May 2015.
NODA Review and Other Comments
NODA Report by Ian Goodenough:
"Noel Coward’s spirited comedy has long been a favourite of mine, so the chance to see HATs take it on was a treat. As always, the society did not disappoint and I found myself swept back to the first time I saw the play as a child — nostalgia can be a harsh critic, so I am pleased to report that The Condomines and their unexpected guest pleased not only me, but a happy audience.
First impressions were of a great looking set. Solid and well dressed with appropriate props and trimmings which is such an important feature in a single-set piece. Add to this the splendid costumes and our transition to the 40’s was complete. Now all that remained was to meet the cast…
Edith, the Condomine’s house keeper, was seen onstage in frequently, but managed to steal several scenes with her comic timing and simple-mannered charm. It’s amazing how someone walking at high speed past a set of french windows can bring the house down, but with the right timing and setup, it’s hilarious!
As for her employers, Charles and Ruth were both well cast and perfectly portrayed a couple who court the well placed in society to improve their own standing. Chief amongst these is Dr. Bradman and his wife, both played well and in Dr Bradman’s case I was pleased to see him out of “Dame Clothes” and in a dramatic role!
Elvira sweeps in with a mischievous glint in her eye and an air of confidence that reduces Charles to a gibbering wreck. Her costume and make up were elegant, ethereal and avoided any clichéd ‘ghosty’ looks, with a performance that worked beautifully – particularly as her behaviour turns more sinister.
Poor Charles goes through the mill, dragged as he was by this pesky poltergeist, with every twist and turn driving him closer to the brink of madness. Following closely on his heels is his poor wife, Ruth, who’s lack of understanding, or belief, in his explanations push her to become more aggravated – a mood she carries right through to the afterlife to plague Charles for eternity with her new sidekick!
But lighting up the evening’s performance was that new-age mistress of spirits, Madame Arcati. Everything from her costume to gentle tone was perfect and sat well within a production that had been directed to avoid any extreme characteristics that would draw focus too much.
Excellent technical work with the cameo by Daphne. A great effect that provided one of the creepier moments of the performance which was a successful crowd-pleaser and another feather in HATs’ cap!