Born in the Gardens (June 15-16) Worthing Connaught Theatre
Revival of Peter Nichols’ play brings malapropisms and classic comedy to Worthing.
Creative Cow revives Peter Nichols’ classic seventies comedy Born in the Gardens which visits Worthing Connaught Theatre on June 15 and 16 and combines a comically eccentric family with a sharp look at the state of the nation.
Born in the Gardens was first performed in 1979 when British behaviour was changing and there was upheaval in the social structure of the country. It is set in a crumbling mock-Tudor house in Bristol, where elderly Maud and her stay-at-home son Maurice have settled into a routine, seemingly undisturbed by the recent death of Maud’s husband.
Maud wants nothing more than a good sit down, to chat with the people on her television and to create exotic cocktails made with ingredients like ‘tequinol’ while being concerned about the increasing popularity of the ‘michaelwave’. Meanwhile Maurice is overprotective of his mother, talks to the cat, plays his drums and adores his jazz 78’s.
The pair’s idyll is only shattered by the appearance of Maurice's older brother Hedley who is a Labour MP and his twin sister Queenie who escaped the family home and moved to America. Both return for the funeral and must convince Maud and Maurice to part, turn their backs on Bristol and lead a more conventional life in L.A. and London.
Director Amanda Knott says: “Born in the Gardens is a beautifully written and very funny play, while at the same time being a devastatingly accurate snapshot of its time. Britain was as broken then, certainly divided, as it is now and our historical perspective on the play makes it even more fascinating. Social commentary alone is not enough to make extraordinary theatre, but Nichols’ characters are so well drawn that audiences can’t help but care for them, laugh with or at them or be angry with them, all the time hanging on every word they speak and every action they take.”
Katherine Senior who plays Maud says: "Leaving aside the obvious comic potential of the role, Peter Nichols has created a character with a history. She's so much a part of her time but she yearns for a past beyond even that. L P Hartley said ‘The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there’ and Born in the Gardens is a tender and tough, fascinating and funny play which invites audiences to see whether Maud and Maurice do anything differently in a country many will remember.”
Born in the Gardens
Connaught Theatre, Union Place, Worthing. BN11 1LG
Friday June 15 and Saturday June 16
7.30pm with a matinee on Saturday at 2.30pm
Tickets: Evenings £12, £14; matinee £10, £12; concessions £2 off; school/youth groups of 10+ £10 per ticket; Friends £8.
Box offices: at the Connaught and Pavilion Theatres
01903 206 206
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