Director takes on acting challenge at late notice

From left:Nigel Bubloz (president of the Southwick Players), Susanne Crosby (Lettice) and Debbie Creissen (Lotte)
From left:Nigel Bubloz (president of the Southwick Players), Susanne Crosby (Lettice) and Debbie Creissen (Lotte)

A bit of nimble footwork has ensured the show will go on as Southwick Players prepare to present Lettice & Lovage from April 15 to 18 at the Barn Theatre, Southwick Street, Southwick.

Susanne Crosby, one of the co-directors, has stepped into the lead role at late notice after the actress playing Lettice had to withdraw from the show due to unforeseen circumstances.

Co director Nettie Sheridan said: “With two directors, the only solution was for one of us to step into the role at short notice, and Susanne agreed to take on this extremely-challenging role. This has meant more work from everyone, cast, directors, wardrobe, props and publicity, but we are both delighted with the way everyone has rallied round, putting in extra hours and extra rehearsals.”

Sir Peter Shaffer’s hilarious Tony-winning comedy of manners, history and architecture is now set for success.

In the opening scenes we meet Lettice, an expert on Elizabethan cuisine and medieval weaponry – an indefatigable but rather daffy enthusiast of history and the theatre. As tour guide of Fustian House, one of the least stately of Wiltshire’s stately homes, she theatrically embellishes its historical past ultimately coming up on the radar of stoic Lotte Schoen, an inspector from the Preservation Trust.

Neither impressed nor entertained by Lettice’s freewheeling history lessons, Lotte fires her but Lettice is not prepared to go without a fight.

Lettice and Lovage was Shaffer’s first comedic work in over 20 years. He had not written a comedy since 1964’s Black Comedy, instead building a reputation with an entire generation of theatre-goers as a master of drama with his plays Equus, Royal Hunt of the Sun and Amadeus.

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