Elizabeth Coleman has great ear for dialogue – another of her plays Secret Bridesmaids Business is also peppered with laugh out loud one liners.
The Darlington Theatre Players are a well-established community theatre group and can certainly be proud of this outstanding production. The relish with which this excellent cast undertook their roles was palpable.
The scene was set in the Patterson’s living room where Ron, who has just been told he has a very limited time to live, decides to gather his family together to make some final arrangements. Unfortunately for him it unravels into an untidy scene with some not so pleasant surprises. Featuring prominently in this smart set is a large clock which ticks away ominously.
Ron, played by Ray Egan is a pedantic, self-important character, around whom the other family members flutter each with their own agenda. There is his repressed wife Dawn, played by Siobahn Vincent, a son with a secret Michael (Richard Hadler) and two sisters Debbie (Belinda Djurdjevic) and Karen (Laura Patterson) with little time for each other.
Ray Egan was terrific as the man who wants to be the centre of attention. He blusters and struts and then is hilarious in his clumsy attempts to smooth things over when events go pear-shaped. Siobahn Vincent was in marvellous form as his meek, put upon wife Dawn. Richard Hadler gave a good performance in the role of not so secretly gay Michael and Djurjvic and Williams worked well as the bickering sisters. The latter being a convincingly spoiled “Daddy’s pet”.
A later entry into the household was Harrison MacLennan as Ted Wilkins, the funeral director. MacLennan made the most of his brief appearance, his total confusion and dismay was hilarious.
As an ensemble piece the show was marvellous. The cast were polished to the level of professional actors. Plaudits to director Brendan Tobin in keeping the pace so tight and the timing so sharp. Mention must also be made of the set and the lighting which were of the highest standard.
An excellent evening’s entertainment.
Darlington Theatre Players present
It’s My Party (and I’ll Die if I Want To!)
by Elizabeth Coleman
Directed by Brendan Tobin
Venue: Marloo Theatre | Marloo Road, Greenmount WA
Dates: 1 – 16 May 2015