Rehearsals are now well underway for our performance of Thicker than Water, written by local playwright and LGDC’s very own Patrick Isherwood. A brilliant cast and crew are hard at work bringing to life this comedy drama which explores family relationships, adoption and questions of nature and nurture. Here, Patrick provides a bit of an insight into how it feels to hand over the reins of his work to his wife who’s taken on the role of directing this one.
“My wife Anne returned last night from a lengthy rehearsal of Thicker than Water, my latest play which she is directing. She informed me that things seemed to be going well and that whenever something went wrong or something did not quite work director and cast would call out ‘blame it on the author!’ That is what happens when you hand over your creation to someone else, however close they may be. It is not unlike sending a small child to school for the first time, knowing that others will have an impact on their development from now on.
I have either directed or co-directed all my plays, Thicker than Water being my ninth since the production of Murder at Gaddesden Manor in 2001. That was a comic murder mystery set in late Edwardian England and most of my plays since then have been fairly broad comedies with few hidden depths.
I love frivolity and the opportunity plays present for showcasing the ridiculous side of life, not least in 2003’s Touching the Bottom or 2015’s political farce Elected to Kill. When I sat down to write Thicker than Water I had in mind trying to create a play that, while still a comedy, also had a more serious side to it. It is set in the present in Kent. James and Maggie Beaumont, a retired couple receive a letter that changes their lives. The chain of events which follows the bombshell allows me to explore some real life issues that, fortunately, also have significant comic potential.
Without giving away the plot I think that the ending will surprise many people and I am hoping that audiences will go away and find themselves thinking about its ramifications.”
The production is sponsored by Harrowell & Atkins solicitors and runs from 8th – 11th May at Little Gaddesden Village Hall. Tickets for the performances as well as pre-theatre supper tickets at the Bridgewater Arms can be booked here or by calling our box office on 07851 339204.