THE words “family strife” take on a whole new meaning in this modern day classic, Altrincham Garrick’s production of the season.
Andrew Bovell writes in a way that’s sure to affect those who see this piece very deply. Bovell’s writing is thoughtful, thought provoking, touching and warmly funny and the cast give performances of a professional standard, thanks to expert direction from Carole Carr.
Poor Rosie (Megan Relph) returns home early from a backpacking trip to Europe after having her heart broken by a Spanish confidence trickster and who would blame here if she packed her bags and did a runner to escape the unfolding turmoil in her family home.
It’s a home presided over by her doting but suffocating dad Bob, played by the always watchable Charlie Tomlinson and her mum Fran, one of the most fascinating female characters I’ve ever encountered in contemporary theatre, brilliantly portrayed here by Brigid Hemmingway.
Bob is a dethroned patriarch and Fran is a woman who speaks her mind, but nothing can prepare them for the shocks that come courtesy of their other three grown up kids, Pip, Mark and Ben.
This piece , while it shouldn’t be dismissed as an angst fest is hard on the emotions at times but it makes you feel like you’re actually living.
Add a gorgeous set from Juliet Jones, some equally lovely and tender music and you have the complete theatre package.
Hopefully the remaining seats will be snapped up because productions as good as this deserve packed houses.
Go and send the box office phones into meltdown, for this is flawlessly brilliant.
Until May 4. The box office is on 0161 928 1677. Star rating - *****