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It’s Never Too Late

This brilliantly crafted comedy by Ron Aldridge is a play to which we can all relate, at least in part, whether we care to admit to it or not. Packed with clever one liners and timeless observations combined with despair and hope, its characters whole heartedly expound the emotions and statements that life bestows on every individual from time to time and which we frequently fight so hard to repress. When Susan Shaw’s husband leaves her for a much younger woman after thirty nine years of marriage, she is faced with the reality of having to take stock of her life and what the future may hold for her. With the aid, primarily of her best friend and confidant Linda Bridges, she finally emerges from her former shell ready to greet the world anew on her own terms, much to the delight and bemusement of those around her.

Judy Buxton’s technically flawless, relentlessly energetic and powerful interpretation of the dominating Linda, holds the stage to command throughout in what is undoubtedly the performance of the evening, while Jeffrey Holland’s stereotypical manly retorts are sublimely delivered with all the grace and subtlety of a sledge hammer cracking a nut. A masterclass in portraying the clueless male with the added bonus of perfect comedy timing. The onstage chemistry between the two is simply quite electrifying. Joanna Van Gyseghen in the pivotal  role of Susan Shaw, gives us a deliciously contrasting account of the abandoned wife as she transforms from the down trodden ugly duckling into a majestic swan in full flight. There are wonderful moments of visual comedy interspersed with those of delicate pathos, finally leaving us with a sense of hope that we should all aspire to attain. Michael Shaw as the unlikely, would be toy boy Thomas, Philip York as Henry, Susan’s long time ardent admirer and Ian Saynor as the wayward husband Richard, compliment each other to perfection in what is unquestionably one of Ian Dickens best cast productions in recent years.

There is no doubt that this presentation would grace the stage of any West End theatre as was confirmed by the thunderous applause from the audience at the final curtain.