Here is Mr Ayckbourn’s recipe for the ‘perfect’ family Christmas.
Ingredients: Take three dysfunctional married couples (two with five children between them! who are present in the house but never seen or heard). Neville and Belinda, Eddie and Pattie and Bernard and Phyllis (who really enjoys a drink).
A young attractive, charismatic novelist, Clive, invited by the virginal, spinster sister of Belinda, Neville’s wife.
An unbelievably inappropriate, bigoted, emotionally violent, racist ‘uncle’, who watches TV throughout Christmas......Uncle Harvey
Belinda’s, less than fulfilled sister......Rachel
Copious amounts of ‘Christmas cheer’ (alcohol)
Method: Combine all the ingredients, allow them to come together and form a potentially catastrophic explosive mixture..........gradually all the adults will revert to childlike behaviour.
This is a play about a family Christmas you want to hope you never have..... but you can never be quite certain.....can you?
The jokes are continuous as these exquisitely drawn middle class English characters reveal their worst traits. The laughter is so infectious you have to be careful not to miss something!
A fine cast of NTC actors, with a number of delightful and experienced fresh faces, is co-directed by Janet Nelson (Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, and All My Sons, ) and Howard Rawlinson with settings designed and built by Matthew Lockyer.
Don’t miss this wonderful play which will put you in a fabulous mood for Christmas.
Christmas party bookings attract very favourable ticket prices depending on the numbers.
Cast: Brain Randell, Tracy Ebbetts, Sandra Monk, Michael Smythe, Patrick Campbell, Heidi Bush, Ben Martin, Pearl Nunn and Alex Jacobs
As Samuel Beckett bleakly observed.......”nothing is as funny as other people’s unhappiness”
The Newcastle Theatre Company season runs from Saturday December 6th to 20th.
Matinees: Sunday December 7th and Saturday 13th at 2.00 p.m.
Details of performance days and times and BOOKINGS! from the NTC Box Office phone 4952 4958....Monday to Friday 3-6 p.m.