Reviewed by Fran Edwards
Leonard Gershe’s play is a well written comedy, with heart, set in the sixties. It centres around the life of a young blind man who has been sheltered by his mother for most of his life. The script tackles some tricky issues with sensitivity and humour.
The only way to get a good production of a play like this is cast it well, and that is exactly what John Graham has done. With the successful 1972 film, which starred Goldie Hawn, still doing the rounds of TV repeats, it needs to measure up and it does!
As the tentative and sensitive young man, Robert Bell is perfect. He has studied his subject well and handles the total blindness convncingly. In the Goldie Hawn role of Jill, Charlotte Batty is completely at ease and conveys a feeling of the free-wheeling, uninhibited late sixties. She has a well maintained accent and her scenes with Bell show their strong connection.
Displaying just the right balance of protective, overbearing mother and loving parent, Lindy Le Cornu, plays Don’s mother with all her considerable skill. Her comic timing is to be envied and she really does hit the right note. The audience never thinks she is right, but they feel for and with her.
The cameo of Ralph Austin, Jill’s director friend, is filled by Anthony Vawser, who doubles as stage manager. A versatile actor, Vawser makes Austin totally unlikeable but still believable.
The set design by Normajeane Ohlsson is well thought out with good sight lines and a real cheap sixties feel, which is reinforced by Judy Menz‘s costumes.
This is another well produced comedy, up to St Jude’s usual high standards and I recommend you get your tickets quickly, you will be cross if you miss it!