It takes courage for a theatre Company to mount a production of a prestigious BBC TV series such as The Vicar Of Dibley. The bravery was well -justfied for Noarlunga Theatre Company however, because the role of Geraldine Grainger written for Dawn French by Richard Curtis was played in this production with immense energy, fun and wit by accomplished performer, Deirdre Quinn. She kept the insubstantial story, really a series of vignettes loaded with one-liners, bubbling along nicely. The script was a smidgen too long and it is felt would have held together better, with the judicial cutting of a few scenes.
The stage design by experienced director Myles Leon was split to provide a church hall, a rather cramped Vicarage and a poky little vestry.
Rev Grainger ,the buxom new female Vicar in the village was not at first accepted by the Congregation, but her assistant Helen Lane(Alice Tinkler), in her desire to win the heart of Hugo Horton(Jeff Penter) tended to overplay her witlessness. Hugo’s father, Parish Council Chairman David Horton was played with suitable authority and bemusement by Stephen Popowski .
John Martin (Owen Newitt) played the disgusting potty-mouthed farmer with glee, and his Elvis impersonation at the audition was a treat. Tim Cousins played the “real” Jim Trott well, with Barbara Henshaw providing many laughs with her awful sanwiches and tuneless singing. Frank Pickle (George Kemp) kept the minutes of the Church Council meetings with monotonous pedantry.
It was pleasing to see the introduction of children into the play who all played their roles with fun and enjoyment . They were Maddison Gordon-Middap(Lizzie), Caitlin Cavallaro(Katie), Reuben Lane(Archie), Eden Lane( James), Brianna Cavallaro( Lucy) and Jorja Watson ( Anna).
The manic wedding scene at the final curtain was a fitting climax to this nutty, fruitcake show, and the first night cafe -style audience, loved it!