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Made in Dagenham

Date

13th March 2018

Society

Woodhouse Musical Theatre Company

Venue

Lawerence Batley Theatre

Type of Production

Musical

Director

Jayne Davison

Musical Director

Robert Durkin

Choreographer

Becky White

Report

Author: Jacqui Hartley

Based on a true story the show explores the movement that caused a significant change in the law reform.  A historical acknowledgement of the sexual discrimination issue (1968} which led to the equal Pay Act that came into force in 1970.

The girls had a specialised task of sewing upholstery for car seats and they were classified as unskilled labour and paid much less than the men.  Encouraged by a sympathetic Union Representive they took their grievances to the Ford management.  Their meeting did not go well and led Rita O'Grady and her colleages to strike.

Rita O'Grady (Holly Comber-Moccia) gave an outstanding performance, reflecting housewife and mother to feisty outspoken person fighting for equal pay.  An excellent characterisation and musicality from Eddie O'Grady, (Neil Broadbent) and both showed the humour and raw emotion in their respective roles.

Connie Riley (Helen Woodhead) Union Representive gave a convincing performance along with Lisa Hopkins, (Antonia Frampton) upper class wife of Ford's UK Boss who showed sympathy for the girls plight despite their difference in class and lifestyle.

Harold Wilson, complete with "Ganex" coat and his pipe brought out the humour, along with Barbara Castle, the no nonsense Secretary of State who made the role her own.  Along with the three Civil Servants  together in bowler hats they delivered a superb song and dance routine "Always a Problem".

All the principals personality of character was indiviual and believable, extremely powerful singing from the all the ladies and good strong movement and singing fron the men in "Made in Dagenham".

The audience loved the arrival of Mr Tooley the Head of Ford's in America as he arrived by Helicopter and was "dropped down" into the auditorium.

An excellent piece of theatre from this Society, Two words AMAZING DAGENHAM!