Bothered and Bewildered

Date 13th September 2018
Society Rainham Theatrical Society (RTS Ltd)
Venue Oast House Theatre
Type of Production Play
Director Jo Godman

Report

Author: Gordon Harris

‘Bothered and Bewildered’ tackles a sensitive, challenging subject: the onset into dementia of a mother, grandmother, and a widowed wife. It must have been difficult enough for Gail Young to write it, even more difficult to direct, Jo Godman took this delicate subject and gave her cast great direction, taking in all aspects of the roles, the highs and lows, of living with this disease. 

The central character Irene, beautifully played by Linda Brown, who gave us a well-judged performance, avoiding temptation to over-play, Linda’s attention to detail and characterisation of this part was totally mesmerising. The same is true of Barbara Cartland, the romantic novelist and source of much of the humour, was played so well by Holly Geldard with her over the top costumes and out-dated language. Holly’s diction, projection and acting were perfectly portrayed in this role. Kelly Bailey’s sympathetic Louise, one of Irene’s daughters - her characterisation was good and seemed at ease throughout. Claire Feekings as Beth, who struggles to manage her family, had great emotional depth, a well-executed part. Polly Robey was relaxed, with great posture and believable as the Consultant. I felt Georgie Sayers, who played both Shelley and Young Irene, and Rob O’Hanlon as Jim/James,  needed more projection in their first scene together. It may be tender love but we needed to hear them. Georgie, when playing the granddaughter, shone in this part. Neil Balderson looked every inch a policeman. As usual a solid and workable set and props, and well plotted lighting to depict a split stage. 

Jo Godman (Director), I shed tears and I suspect most of the audience did, many having experienced parents or grandparents who have or are being affected by this cruel disease. You certainly deserved more of an audience. You touched our hearts and that shows great direction. Thank you.