An Old Man’s New & Last Tango In Airdrie

Date 17th May 2019
Society Airdrie Arts Guild Drama Group
Venue Ebenezer Church Hall, Airdrie
Type of Production Play
Director Ronnie Mackie

Report

Author: Stuart McCue-Dick

For their Spring offering the club presented two excellent and very different one act plays.

“An Old Man’s New” is set in the early sixties and tells the story of Joe Docherty, who having been laid off is forced to move out of his native Glasgow. If follows Joe as he copes with his new environment, loss of friends and all that life has to throw at him including the loss of his wife. In the lead role Bill McCloy captured Joe’s blunt and earthy humour very well. He was a great foil to his life-long friend and the narrator of the piece Father Billy Boyne played with great effect by Colin Archibald. Much of the humour of the piece came from the fact that the friends belonged to opposite sides of the religious divide. Linda Gouther as Joe’s wife used her brassy good nature to try and help him cope with his lot whilst his daughter Lynne (Karry McKellar) provided him with comfort and support following the passing of Jessie. This was a well-directed and acted play – at times though provoking and at times extremely witty. Well done to the actors for giving us all 4 excellent portrayals.

The second play was a complete contrast. “The Last Tango in Airdrie” finds the last 4 remaining members of a local am dram group at their AGM wondering what show to do next to help save the group. Having fallen on hard times Gordon the group’s director decides the only thing that seems to be selling tickets is “sex”. In the title role Eddie Gouther was perfect never missing the chance of a laugh often at the expense of audience members, local politicians or fellow club members. He worked hard to keep the group under control with often hilarious outcomes. As the musical obsessed club secretary Joyce, Helen McAleer, was brilliant. Morag Donald was an excellent Margaret as the opinionated, wannabe diva who thought she was a class above the rest. The final member of the group was Bernard the stage manager who was well played by Liam McKinstray. Did they succeed in getting “bums on seats” – I won’t spoil the ending all I will say is I have not laughed out loud so much in a very long time.

Both plays were well set with appropriate furniture and props and costumes were in keeping with both time period and the individual characters.

Thank you to the club for the invitation and a very enjoyable nights entertainment. I look forward to panto later in the year.