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BED NODA review.

Congratulations to all involved in the wonderful performance of BED last week. The feedback has been wonderful, and you should all be proud of yourselves for this thought provoking play.

Read on for the full NODA review, courtesy of Anne Lawson

Jim Cartwright’s ‘Bed’
Tenterden Town Hall
Saturday 2nd November 2019
Director: David Waters

Described as ‘odd, harrowing and hilarious, entirely without sentimentality, sturdy, but moving’, and certainly this production lived up to this description. Seven individuals, a dutiful wife portrayed by Jane Barton, Geoff  Dale as the saluting seafarer Captain Patch, the bosom lady Beryl, Jo Dale, the miming motorist Charles, Ian Klemen, the spinster lady Vera portrayed by Tina Gallagher, sad widower Jim, Stephen Page plus bodyless Sermon Head, white faced, red eyed and tongued Geoff Down looking on with some terrific lines ‘cooking in their own snoring heat’ great.

These wonderful mature characters were superbly portrayed. In addition, the piece featured a beautiful dance routine from Meg Whorlow as The Ghost Bride – interspersed with some well-known musical items.  An extra attraction to this 90-minute play of imagination and interpretation was the delightful performance of themed singing from ‘Sweet Dreamers’ Hannah, Izzy, Lola, Niamh, Poppy, and Scarlett in pants of various tartans and white logo T shirts and sneakers – students trained at David’s  Tenterden Academy. Devised by David under the musical direction of Neil Cackett and Monika Green, the girls sang seven dream themed pieces so very well.

The set was particularly interesting, devised and constructed by Peter Huxley, containing I would describe as dark blue stepping-stones of height and angles, with pillows for each singer initially, into fully made up individual beds where much of the action took place. At the back was set a tall off-white chest with some open drawers dressed with overhanging garments, various props and from there appeared the Head, as well as through the base of one of the beds!  Either side of the stage stood the flats with shelves which were decorated as an Aladdin’s cave of memorabilia – flags, instruments, an old microphone, brooms, old tennis racket complete with press, old suitcases, a teddy, boas a top hat and more.

TODS lighting and sound engineer unseen John Sewell was aloft on the balcony, who created some wonderful effects and colour, after a minor technical mike hitch before we could enter the hall to commence. Sally Klemen was not only SM but together with Beverley Mulrooney responsible for the array of props but the night attire costuming, with Sermon Head’s makeup  wonderfully ghoulish.

The eye catching, well balanced and interesting programme was devised, which I have taken to enter in the NODA programme competition.

A most fascinating  subject ‘sleep’ and our varying ways of achieving it, and those dreams – sometimes strange, sometimes frightening, sometimes magic. David brought these characters  and ideas to life and gave us a thought-provoking experience, one I felt far more people should have shared. Their misfortune! Congratulations to all involved.

Anne Lawson

Regional Representative

NODA SE District 3




Published 8 November, 2019