On Friday I found myself in the unusual position of being a paying member of the audience for ‘Say It With Flowers’ – probably for the first time since joining the Petuaria Players 13 years and 40 productions ago.
For me it was a play off ‘resting’ with minimal involvement other than on the graphics and publicity design so it was an opportunity to book a seat and watch a performance properly. Usually, for members who are not cast in a play, we would find ourselves carrying out tasks backstage, blind but listening to the actors and reactions from the audience.
So to sit down in the auditorium and experience the full production in all its glory, feel the reactions and ripples of laughter close up, to hear the whispered comments from nearby seats was amazing.
More rewarding was to watch my friends bring weeks of hard, stretching rehearsals to fruition. And what a performance. As usual, the coldness and dryness of rehearsals turned into warmth and laughter on stage, the ultimate reward of all that hard work, hearing the audience laugh and react, often in places or to lines that we hadn’t realised were that funny. Even though I had seen everything multiple times by now, to watch and appreciate it in the audience I was surprised how fresh it felt, despite knowing what was coming up next on every scene.
It was a superb night, a great performance by the actors, and not forgetting the unsung heroes working backstage with the numerous props and the fitting music that accompanied the play.
The last night of the run was on Saturday and had the added excitement of having Jane Thornton in the audience. Jane, of course, wrote Say it With Flowers so it was an honour to have her watch our interpretation of her play and to feedback to us at the end when she came backstage to meet the cast.
It was certainly interesting for her to be watching us because we have often watched her perform on stage, often with husband John Godber.
Jane Thornton joins the cast on the set of Say it With Flowers
Afterwards it was time for our traditional after-play drinks (and pizzas) on stage and the setting of ‘Stan and Mavis’s’ patio created a great backdrop for our late night January summer garden party.
Somehow, despite the late night festivities, we were back there at 9.30 on Sunday morning to dismantle the set and the auditorium. Now we can relax – for a week – before rehearsals start again for the next one…..
Watch out for our upcoming posts with news about the next play and the photo gallery of this production. Why not subscribe and never miss a post? Simply add your email on the front page where you see this widget –