Shanghaied and Gone But Not Forgotten

Date 25th May 2018
Society Airdrie Arts Guild Drama Group
Venue Ebeneezer Church Hall, Airdrie
Type of Production Play
Director Ronnie Mackie

Report

Author: David Black

This was certainly a show of two halves with two one act plays. ‘Shanghaied’, by Liz Lochhead, is set around four children at the start of the second world war, three of whom were evacuated from working class Clydebank and sent to live in the remote and rural Castle Douglas.  The evacuees featured Eddie Gouther and Morag Donald as brother and sister Billy and Morag, with Peter Paterson as Hughie who joined a lonely Emily played by May Wakely to live with her and her family.  As adults, all four actors brilliantly portrayed the characters of the young people as they bonded and built relationships sharing stories and experiences in their own words as they saw things through their own eyes at that time. Contrasting, ‘Gone but Not Forgotten’, by James Cameron Morton, featured a family in a Glasgow tenement coming together to pay their last respects to an unfaithful, womanising, pigeon fancying husband and father.  As they gathered around the coffin, in playing the mother, Giovanna Tweedie did not hide her true feelings of being glad to see the back of her husband, doing everything she could to give him the send-off he would not have wanted.  Ali Donald and Colin Archibald played feuding sons Peter and Jim with Nicola Young and Nicole Cowan as the more naive daughters Agnes and Cissie.  Bill McCloy was suitably cast as the Presbyterian Minister in attendance with Mark Andrews as Uncle Davie, the drunken brother of the deceased.  Adding to the fun, Lorraine Keenan arrived at the house unexpectedly as the ‘fancy woman’ Sally, stopping at nothing to pay her own respects to the deceased in the coffin.  A truly hilarious play with an unexpected twist at the end as the drunken husband and father enters the room (Ronnie Mackie) leaving us to wonder who is in the coffin? Two great plays performed extremely well by the company.  Well done!