The Veil

Date 25th March 2016
Society Richmond Amateur Dramatic Society
Venue Richmond Georgian Theatre Royal
Type of Production Play
Director Gregan Davis.

Report

Author: Peter Parlour

Conor  McPherson premiered this play in2011 at the National Theatre London and at that time the Times described his play as “A cracking fireside  tale of haunting and decay”.

The society did a very good job  and kept the audience on the edge of their seats. Set in 1822 and this was McPherson’s first foray of period drama - set around a haunted house in Ireland troubled by colonial  history, developing into a story of the search for love.

Lady  Madeleine Lambroke   a widowed landowner was very well played by newcomer, Helena Langford. Lady Lambroke' daughter 'Hannah' (well played by  Tabby Milton), is engaged to a English Gentleman in England and at the arrival of 'Madeleine’s' cousin, 'Rev  Berkeley', a defrocked  Anglican priest (excellently played by Bruce  Cunningham) and his companion philosopher  'Charles Audelle' (excellently played by  Warnock Kerr), they discover that a murder was committed in the main room, leaving a ghostly impression on the household.

This story is told by the housekeeper 'Mrs Goulding' (well played by  Barbara Hughes). The relationship between 'Hannah' and her Mother was very dramatic leading to constant heated exchanges. One of players  'Grandie  Maria Lambroke', (Madeleine’s  Grandmother) the role played by Jackie McLeod only had a few lines to say although was never off the stage.

The estate  manager 'Mr  Finga'l didn’t help matters between the love tangles of Hannah and her mother, He was played by another newcomer, Martin McFadden, who gave us a very powerful performance, he will be a great asset to the  society. Another newcomer was Alison Williams who played the house maid 'Clare Wallace', very well indeed, and during the heated exchanges she sang a song very tunefully. She was kept busy providing  Audelle and the Priest  with Whisky.

The audience almost  leapt from their seats as 'Berkeley' was having a séance  and there was a mighty bang associated with the Ghost. A little later 'Audelle' saw a vision of 'Alice', the little girl that was murdered. 'Alice',  played by Eleanor  Harland  just drifted in and out of the plot.

'Rev Berkeley'  decided to hold a séance to clear the air and  Mr Fingal  couldn’t come to terms with it.
In the end Hannah left for England and Fingal and Madeleine  got together, Audelle shot himself much to the horror of the Priest.

A very wordy play indeed which must have been a challenge for the Director. Mention must be made of the Music it really gave you the dramatic feeling,

It really  was a ghostly night but was very well performed by the Society. With excellent costumes and make up and a very interesting set it was a good nights entertainment.