REVIEW: Fool’s Paradise, Lowther Pavilion

Kelsey Beth Crossley will judge Northern Star
Kelsey Beth Crossley will judge Northern Star
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Fylde Coast Players have successfully and very deliberately aimed in recent times to include a wide range of types of drama in their four productions each year.

The consistent excellence of their acting is maintained here, but the choice of the play is curious, as Peter Coke’s now-dated 1963 play is never more than mildly amusing.

The auction scene from Fylde Coast Players' production of Fools' Gold

The auction scene from Fylde Coast Players' production of Fools' Gold

Helen Barrow, nicely regal and aided by impeccably clear diction, forms a strong and contrasting duo with the more practical Debbie Couchman, both widows of the late Basil Hayling and now living together with antique furniture but no ready cash.

Sadly the plot is so silly that the fine work of the cast cannot make the audience care much about them or the value of a necklace which may hold the key to the future.

Vera Cummins, full of well-judged timing, is comical as the maid Rose and there are two funny and over-the-top performances from Emily Cartmell and Rosemary Roe.

Tim Greenwood, Ellie Greenwood and Kieran O’Doherty give wholehearted support, but flat lines such as “I’m as stubborn as a bus conductress” are all too frequent.

Director Mandy Hall keeps the second half moving along at a better pace, but talented actors deserve much more challenging material than this. Until tomorrow.

JULIAN WILDE