TITLE: The Lady In The Van
By: DAVID LOCKWOOD
The experienced Christine Davies as the eponymous ‘Lady’ handled Miss Shepherd’s eccentricities brilliantly, scarcely stuttering but once on opening night.
The role of the young Bennett was played by Colin Harris, who interacts with Shepherd and other characters, including neighbours and social worker.
Patrick Hibbin played Bennett the elder, who acts chiefly as the narrator, but also interestingly acts as Bennett’s conscience, frequently arguing or setting straight his younger self.
Hibbin, who only returned from Hong Kong last week after being a victim of the volcanic ash, was splendid as the down-to-earth Leeds-born playwright.
The only criticism was that he occasionally dropped his voice to such a low volume that those of us a touch deaf could barely make out his every word.
Harris had the more difficult task of interacting with Miss Shepherd, at times erupting with frustration and occasionally forgetting his northern roots.
The 13-strong cast also includes Angela Payne as the mother, Matthew Fairhead and Prue Griffiths as the neighbours, Dorothea Annison as the social worker and Emma Wood as the doctor.
Alistair Cheetham directs his second play for the Thespians, which runs until Saturday when there is also a 2pm matinee.