After a full days travel on Thursday it was a relief to hit the Bedford Swan Theatre and do the unloading and preparations for the show. This relief was also largely due to the fact that we actors scuppered off for some relaxation time, while the crew worked their magic.
It quickly became apparent to me that Bedford was a lovely little town full of lovely people. And swans. I was chauffeured over to my hosts home and was instantly charmed by the couple. And not just because Sue answered the door in her dressing gown.
Just having reached retirement, and a spry seventy, respectively, Sue and John welcomed me into their home with open arms, a cup of tea, and plenty of theatre stories. They were champions all weekend long.
This ‘tour’ of Accidental Death was actually just a wonderful opportunity for dedicated theatre enthusiasts to meet, re-meet, share stories food and drink and enjoy some high-quality amateur theatre.
And that is indeed what happened. We came busting out of the gates, guns blazing and lit up Friday Nights show, to the delight of the entire crowd. This piece requires energy and rapid-fire delivery and the momentum built from the first laugh (five seconds in) all the way to the final round of applause.
Some fortuitous events conspired to make this go down:
– the two front rows consisted largely of gently drunk upper-formers who had studied the play in class
– A guy named John from the Bedford Theatre company, whose warm and raucous laugh sounded off all night long
-we all slept really well
-my awesome friend Lindsey came up (down?) from Oxford and we hung out before the show and after
-Constable Stevie Challens led us in a particularly spirited Theatre Haka before the show
-it was our biggest audience to date. Despite what we had been led to believe, a large, appreciative crowd turned up. And really enjoyed themselves.
It may have, in fact, been our best show. And the Indian food we went for afterwards may have been, the best curry I’ve ever had.