Date 6th February 2014
Society Stevenage Lytton Players
Venue The Sishes
Type of Production Play
Director Dave Slade


Author: Vicki Avery

There comes a time when a society has to present a play to its loyal following, for no other reason than it needs to stretch itself and push the parameters just that little bit further. The performance of “1984” by the Thursday Group did just that.

This was a superb performance and my congratulations to all involved, Well Done.

The atmosphere created in the foyer/bar prior to the performance was intimidating and cold and prepared the audience for what they might find on entering the auditorium. Here, stone faced guards watched your every move as you settled into your seat, although their presence never made you feel completely at ease.

Scene changes throughout were smooth and well executed and the thoughtfully selected visuals made this technically a good show.

Well cast, and with a set that allowed the audience to gaze and reflect on the sometimes intimate moments of two young people, we were transported into a futuristic time- warp.

Lighting was imaginative and added to the atmosphere in most scenes and sound was good.

Aaron Govey as Winston displayed a mature theatrical talent that he has nurtured over the past few years and was now able to show how versatile his performances can be.  

Imogen Bryan, likewise, displayed great self-control and discipline as Julia and the movement, body language and facial expression of both characters were perfectly orchestrated.

Poppy Byrne gave us a very good characterisation of O’Brian. This is an iconic part and Poppy did it well, keeping the intimidation going throughout.

The grouping of the remainder of the cast and the positioning of them in the space were excellent and throughout the performance their team work was well delivered and presented. Here we witnessed total commitment to characterisation. Congratulations to you all.

Costumes were good throughout and I particularly liked the contrast between the Airstrip One uniforms and the ill-fitting casual dress and red lipstick.

The programme was nicely laid out, but not all the type was easy to read, in particular the cast list and creative team page.

May I wish you every success at the Edinburgh Fringe in August and thank you once again for your  generous hospitality.

Vicki Avery (NODA)