St. Mary's Theatre Club - Summer Production

"Fish Out Of Water" by Derek Benfield

This light hearted farce about a group of ill assorted holidaymakers on a "package holiday" in the 1960s is ideal viewing for summer evenings and has been delighting audiences throughout the summer. Produced by Margaret Perkovic, the play moves along at a cracking pace and the situations which present themselves must surely bring back memories of similar experiences for many of the audience.

At the start, we meet the retired Brigadier Hubback and his aloof wife Audrey, beautifully played by Richard Farr and Mary Dean, Dora Cowley, a bus conductress , played with great sympathy by Meegan Baker, and Marisa, the local girl, played with real conviction by Sarah Taylor. All is calm and serene until the arrival of Agatha Hepworth, an elderly widow who wishes to organise everyone, superbly played by Jane Hurd, with Mim Bowman ideal as her gentle and timid sister, Fiona Francis. The party is completed by the mild Mr. Mallet (Steve Harvey) who has lost the rest of his party, harassed tour representative Julian Whittle (Jim Johnson) and the glamour seeking Len Barrett (Julien Morel).

After the noisy arrival of Agatha, soon to be followed by the sudden disappearance of her sister Fiona, the turmoil created produces some very funny and enjoyable scenes: Audrey Hubback amazing everyone by being excellent at cricket when her husband did not even know she could play, the Brigadier coming back to life when he has something to organise, the quiet way Fiona and Mr. Mallet gel together, the exhaustion caused to poor Julian Whittle, Dora trying vainly to attract the attention of Len Barett, whilst he only has eyes for Marisa, and the capable way in which Marisa copes with everything that happens. The experienced players gave their usual high quality performances and it was good to see three younger members of the Club taking part and doing so well. Many congratulations to all of them for giving audiences a very enjoyable show.

The excellent stage set gave a real impression of a sunny holiday hotel lounge, greatly helped by good lighting, properties, sound, etc. Wardrobe and make-up continued in the high standard we have come to expect from the Club and Stage Manager Lesley Thomas, with her Assistant Shirley Smith and all other helpers, must be congratulated on all their hard work. House Manager Rose Tabraham, along with stewards, publicity etc., produced a very smooth operation and the refreshments sold by the Producer during the interval were obviously much appreciated. Many, many thanks to Maggie Perkovic for a splendid summer entertainment.

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