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January 13, 2023


After my post yesterday, my friend Donna rang with an unexpected suggestion. “It’s such a lovely little play,” she said. “It would be a shame not to see it performed.” Well, I couldn’t disagree with that. “Why,” she asked, “don’t you play Violet?” I was initially flabbergasted.

Me? The thought had never entered my mind. Unlike Emily in That’s Nice and Maggie in An Unhelpful Complication, Violet was not a role I wrote for myself. The thought had never crossed my mind. Never. Violet’s an old lady. I may be getting on a bit, but I’m not old yet. How could I possibly play her? 

Yes, a few years ago I did play an old lady in Whisking Eggs, but she was a completely over the top, “mad as a box of frogs” character. Nothing subtle about Bunty. I just had to be completely out there. (It was a lot of fun.)

Whisking Eggs is a play for anyone who’s ever wondered what you’d get if you mixed an over-sexed pensioner, a repressed librarian, a runaway vicar’s wife and a dominatrix? And let’s be honest: who amongst us has never wondered exactly that?

And it was a farce. (As I’m sure anyone could guess from the captioned promo.)

Although it has moments of humour (I’d be happy if one person in the audience actually got the St. Augustine joke), Ruby Red Lipstick is not a farce. And Violet is a lot more subtle and touching. No, I thought, I really am not up to it.

And yet.

As we talked I began to wonder. Could I? Well, maybe. I rang another friend, the one who’d directed me in Whisking Eggs, and put the idea to her. “Why not?” she said. Hmm.

A little while later, as I was walking from the kitchen into the livingroom, I made a conscious effort to switch from a stride to a more shuffling gait. Yeah, that kinda did it. This was a gait that said old lady. Could I? Well, maybe. I sent another note to the board to say I was withdrawing my withdrawal of the play.

Now I just have to see what Ben thinks. He was up for me directing him as James. Would he be happy to play opposite me? Probably. We’re meeting up this afternoon for a cup of tea, so I will ask him. 

Violet, eh? Blimey.

From → Blog

One Comment
  1. Donna permalink

    Well, well, well…now that is a turn up for the books! Why not, indeed. Keep me posted.

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