East Lane Theatre, Vale Farm, Watford Road, Sudbury, Middlesex, HA0 3HG Registered Charity Number 1183134
THE PLAY’S THE THING
Part Three 2003 to 2009
Click on any of the show titles to go to the galleries.
OUR CHRISTMAS 2003 production was Alan Bennett’s farcical comedy HABEAS CORPUS directed by
Michael Gerrard in which one of the characters tried hanging himself!
The new year took us back to 17th Century France with Linda Hampson’s production of Moliere’s TARTUFFE, a comedy about hypocrisy and gullibility. This was followed by Hugh Whitemore’s drama PACK OF LIES, based on the true story of Americans in Ruislip spying for Russia . It was directed by John Ayres. Danny Popkin designed a spectacular set for Alan Ayckbourn’s black comedy WAY UPSTREAM, which was directed by Andrea Miller, and Barry Serjent rounded off the year with ROUND THE TOWN, an evening of music hall which he devised and directed.
The five daughters in THE HOUSE OF BERNARDA ALBA are kept under strict supervision by their
domineering mother. Lorca’s classic tragedy was directed by Andrea.
A complete contrast was our next
production, THE SUNSHINE BOYS. Neil Simon’s comedy about two old vaudeville comedians was directed by Laurence Conway. Then Bryan Hourihane directed THE MEMORY OF WATER, Shelagh Stevenson’s play about three sisters who meet up on the eve of their mother’s funeral.
This was followed by THE UNDERSTANDING a gentle and nostalgic family play by Angela Huth , directed by Linda Mallett and the year ended with Sam and Bella Spewack’s convict comedy MY THREE ANGELS directed by Linda Hampson.
2006 began with Arthur Miller’s classic drama DEATH OF A SALESMAN about the failure of the American Dream of success for all, which was directed by Michael Gerrard, then came THE MUSICAL COMEDY MURDERS OF 1940 by John
Bishop, directed by Bryan Hourihane.
The next production was Robin Maugham’s sinister play THE SERVANT, which reversed the usual roles between a butler and his master, it was directed by Andrea. Our Seventieth birthday season got off to a lively start in December with Barry’s ‘déjà revue’ CRACKERS FOR CHRISTMAS directed by David Hight. The season continued with Ibsen’s drama about an unhappy marriage A DOLL’S HOUSE, which we had first produced in 1971. It was directed by Linda Hampson.
Carrying on the nostalgia theme, having been staged by East Lane in 1951 at the old St. John’s Hall in Crawford Avenue, our next production directed by John McGee and Jenny Loomes, was Oscar Wilde’s classic comedy THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST
This was followed by a revival of Agatha Christie’s thriller AND THEN THERE WERE NONE, which the Club had presented at Preston Manor School in 1958, directed by John Prance, and our birthday season ended with another mystery murder play LADIES IN RETIREMENT by Edward Percy and Reginald Denham. This had originally been produced in 1971; but directed this time around by Anne Gerrard.
Our December production was Ray Cooney’s very funny farce about FUNNY MONEY, directed by
The new year saw Linda Hampson’s production of AN INSPECTOR CALLS. J.B.Priestley’s drama about hypocrisy in Edwardian English society.
This was followed by COMMUNICATING DOORS. Alan Ayckbourn’s time travelling murder mystery play set in a hotel room spanning 40 years. Andrea then directed A MONTH OF SUNDAYS, Bob Larbey’s comedy about old age and retirement, and 2008 ended with Danny Popkin’s production of `ALLO`ALLO, the stage version of the popular television series by David Croft and Jeremy Lloyd.
Next came A DELICATE BALANCE a Pullitzer Prize winning drama by Edward Albee, about a deeply troubled family, directed by Andrea. Noël Coward’s comedy RELATIVE VALUES is also about a family, but one worried by social niceties; it was directed by Elaine. Harold Pinter’s drama about menace and subjection THE BIRTHDAY PARTY, was directed by Jenny and John and the year ended with TRESPASS, Emlyn Williams’ Welsh ghost story directed by Bryan.