We were at the other end of the entertainment scale yesterday. The Kirkie Players’ Turret Theatre in Kirkintilloch holds about 60 in a very-close-up performers/audience scenario. Having been going there for probably 20 years, we know and admire many of the actors quite well, and yet, the same suspension of reality is no-less astonishing than it was at the King’s Theatre.
Each of us knows that the script, emotions, sets, costumes, lights, background sounds, and the presence of a prompter are all artificial and yet the anticipation is always there. I certainly go to be entertained (whatever that exactly means) and amused and there are obviously enough like-minded people to fill the little auditorium on each performance. Considering that every-one here is unpaid and gives freely of their time and effort, they do a wonderful job.
The play was J.B.Priestly’s ‘An Inspector Calls’ and so is well-known in the repertoire of drama clubs. It brings a problem for the Producer who must bring some form of fresh approach to prevent direct comparison to the ‘professional’ performances. Nothing ‘amateurish’ about Kirkie Players, however…..they make it seem so easy.
So, another production and performance of which all can be proud!
The last time I was at the King’s Theatre, was in 1990, when Glasgow was European Capital of Culture, and I was asked to check the loop system for hearing-aid wearers (it was rubbish!). The Young Lady of the House, and I were there again tonight, to see Blood Brothers, with StageText for those who could not hear the script well.
It is amazing how the mind can accept images and situations (which are obviously contrived, and in many ways un-realistic, as in opera), for some hours. Even the break in the middle for an ice-cream (you know, the tub with the little spoon) did not really break the continuity. We seemed to settle back into the imaginary world very quickly.
The story-line took the theme of twins separated at birth, and followed their two parallel universes, and becomes increasingly-predictable. The individual performances were spectacular, and the music, whilst not ‘hummable’ (to use the composer’s own words), was very enjoyable.
Glasgow was always known as the ‘entertainers’ graveyard’, but the standing applause from the packed audience certainly indicated the success they had made of their job.
But what is their job? Is it to suspend reality? Is it to stir-up our emotions? Is it to make us think differently about some subject? Is it to take us out of our normal life for a few hours?
……anyway we can both certainly recommend this production!