Farndale Avenue MacBeth - One Way Pendulum

'Party Piece'

by Richard Harris

April 1995


It is the night of Michael's and Roma's fancy dress house-warming party. The evening looks set to be a lively one until a string of hilarious disasters strike, including a distinct lack of guests, a burning garden shed, a marauding Zimmer frame and the prospect of an irate husband on the prowl.


Michael Smethurst (Jim Mclaughlin); Roma Smethurst (Kit Johnson); Mrs Hinson (Sheila Cox); David Hinson (David Walford); Jennifer Hinson (Jill Lawford); Toby Hancock (John Mills); Barbara Jackson (Mary Mason); Sandy Lloyd-Meredith (Jill Gregory)

Director: David Walford (with Graham Bradshaw)

'The Farndale Avenue Housing Estate Townswomen's Guild Dramatic Society's Production of Macbeth' 

by David McGillivray and Walter Zerlin Jr.


April 1996



... and that’s just the script! Yes, the indomitable ladies of Farndale are at it again, and this time the victim is no less than William Shakespeare. The ladies of Farndale are to theatre what car crashes are to TV (fun to watch but you wince when they collide). With Lady Macbeth having taken the wrong public transport and ending up so far away from the theatre she's unlikely to make the curtain down, let alone the start of the play, the male stage manager has to step into the breach and he faces a female Macbeth! And that's just the start....


Mrs Reece, playing Lady MacDuff & Doctor (Kay Trenchard); Thelma, playing: Macbeth & Ross (Vanessa Brett); Henry, playing Lady Macbeth & 8 Kings (Dave Walford); Minnie, playing Banquo & Lady MacBeth's Son (Jill Lawford); David Plummer (Andy Harding); Dawn playing 1st Witch, Porter, 2nd Murderer, Duncan & Fleance (June Berrie); Felicity, playing 2nd Witch, Seyton, 1st Murderer, Malcolm, Gentlewoman (Gill Lewisohn); Kate, playing 3rd Witch, MacDuff & Messenger (Sheila Cox); Gwynneth (Fran Kirwan) George Peach (John Mills)


Director: Kit Johnson


'One Way Pendulum'

by NJ Simpson

December 1996


Each of the Groomkirbys has an idee fixe. Kirby is teaching his speak-your-weight machines the "Hallelujah Chorus"; his mother pays the neighbour to eat their left-overs; his aunt in her wheelchair is convinced she's touring the Hebrides; his father is building the Old Bailey in the living-room. When this is complete the judge and jury move in with some bizarre results ...

The play, in the absurdist genre, contains numerous diversions and non-sequiturs, such as people riding to hounds on camels, and a game of three-handed whist played by two participants, without cards, in the dark, but the core consists of the efforts of the son of the house, Kirby, to teach a collection of talking weight machines, which he has stolen, to sing the Hallelujah chorus from Messiah, and his father's decision to build a replica of the Old Bailey in the sitting room.

Elsewhere in the household Mrs Groomkirby is so obsessed with cooking that she employs a neighbour to come in twice a week to help eat the food, and the daughter, Sylvia is dissatisfied with the length of her arms. In Mr Groomkirby's home-made Old Bailey a judge and counsel appear; Kirby is put on trial for mass murder (he kills people so as to indulge his passion for wearing black mourning).


Kirby Groomkirby (Dom Beer); Robert Barnes (Kevin Kirwan); Mabel Groomkirby (Gill Lewisohn); Sylvia Groomkirby (Becky Walford); Aunt Mildred (June Berrie); Myra Gantry (Sheila Cox); Arthur Groomkirby (John Mills); Stanley Honeyblock (Joel Lintern); Judge (Kit Johnson); Policeman (Andy Harding); Usher (Lucy Heard); Prosecuting Counsel (Andrea Brewster); Defending Counsel (Jill Lawford)


Director: Graham Bradshaw