Funny, nostalgic and poignant describe the Spotlight Players' Show, "You Are My Sunshine", a tribute to one of their much-loved founder members, "Auntie " Rosemary Brain, who sadly passed away this year.
Barry Parks (not just a pretty face!) provided his usual superb props, and also elicited much laughter when, clad in tights and pink tutu, he executed a clip from the Sugar Plum Fairy ballet. There was further comic relief from Ross Norman (a welcome return after his absence) and Ben Russell in "The Flowerpot Men" (with Harriet Gausden as Little Weed). Other sketches from this "dynamic duo" included "Sperm Donor", which must rank as one of the funniest ever scripts.
Ably complemented by Kevin Hunt, Ross co-presented the Show, and also reprised his "Mr Bean" role - best stick to Maigret now, Rowan Atkinson! The cast took us down memory lane with their enthusiastic renditions of songs from the sixties and earlier eras, such as "Puppet on a String", "A Little Help From my Friends", "We're a Couple of Swells" and "Sisters". Rosemary always had a smile on her face, hence the inclusion of "When You're Smiling". The audience, in good voice, helped the cast along with the last song, "You Are My Sunshine". This suggestion came from Rosemary's little granddaughter, and made a fitting and catchy finale. Rosemary's mum, Spotlight stalwart Bonnie Beck, went onstage to give her own moving and sometimes humorous recollections of her daughter. The whole production was held together by Musical Director, Wendy Hammond, who did not miss a beat. Proceeds from the raffle raised over £400 for the charity, Lymphoma Action. All credit to Spotlight for succeeding in putting on a show in these difficult times.
REVIEW BY Mary Barlow