belper players in fast and funny tale

Mik Horvarth as Dennis and Alex Wrampling as Pauline in Belper Players' production of One For The Road.

Mik Horvarth as Dennis and Alex Wrampling as Pauline in Belper Players' production of One For The Road.

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Belper Players are back in action when their latest production is performed early next month.

Willy Russell is probably best known for his strong female characters in plays like Shirley Valentine and Educating Rita, but Belper Players are reviving one of his other 1980s plays, which takes the male point of view.

One For The Road tells the story of Dennis Cain, whose rapidly approaching 40th birthday has triggered a midlife crisis.

As he questions his aspirational middle-class lifestyle on an ‘executive’ estate, chaos reigns outside as vandals wreck gardens and decapitate garden gnomes.

The play takes place as Dennis and his eager-to-impress wife Pauline entertain the unofficial king and queen of the estate, Roger and Jane, in an evening where everyone will end up facing questions.

Director Jane Wilton said of the production and the play: “It’s very fast, very funny and the dialogue has all the sharpness that you would expect of Willy Russell. Dennis loves his music and for me it’s been fun reliving the 1980s, the decade when I first started going out and getting into music.”

Jane’s last play was Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me, which was based on the experiences of the Beirut hostages. For Jane, One For The Road is also a play about someone who is imprisoned. One For The Road is far more lighthearted but it’s very much about a man who’s trapped, this time mentally. I’d love to get inside Dennis’s mind and think about who he used to be, and how he ended up where he is.”

One For The Road will be performed at The Strutt Centre, Derby Road, Belper from April 2-5 at 7.30pm. Tickets cost £7 with £6 concessions for the first night only. Contact Joyce Towle on 01335 370827 or visit www.belperplayers.com

The play contains strong language.

n Pictured are cast members Mik Horvarth and Alex Wrampling