The Barn Theatre, Southwick Community Centre.
June 6, 7, 8 & 9, 1990.
The Killing of Sister George
by Frank Marcus
Daphne Thornton – June Buckridge [Sister George]
Rosemary Mose – Alice McNaught [Childie]
Frances Moulton – Mrs. Mercy Croft
Joan Braddock – Madame Xenia
Stage Manager – Dave Comber
Properties – Margaret Davy
Properties – Sue Whittaker
Continuity – Sandra Eardley
Set Design – Dave Comber
Lighting – Frances Thorne
Sound Effects – Alison Cattell
Box Office – Jill Redman
Publicity – Andrew Cregeen
Publicity – Ann Donkin
Publicity – Jean Porter
Programme Note #1: The Killing of Sister George
PH wrote: “Whether it be the American Dallas, the Australian Neighbours or our own Coronation Street, long running ‘soaps’ are now a fact of life.
For some people, the characters, like ‘George’ step out of the realms of fantasy and become real.
Like Chaplin’s films, this play shows how comedy and pathos walk hand in hand.”
Review #1: The Killing of Sister George
Publication: Shoreham Herald
Publication Data: June 15 issue – page 16
Reviewer: Alan Olieff
Text Header: “Sister George rather bitter”
A NURSE with an attitude problem was the focal point of Wick Theatre Company’s The Killing of Sister George. Daphne Thornton was often morose, ungrateful and cynical in the title rôle of the Frank Marcus comedy, performed at Southwick’s Barn Theatre.
Comedy is a misleading label. Although there were quite a few amusing moments, the overall impression was gloomy. Sister George became increasingly bitter as the death of her character in a rural soap opera drew nearer. Cruelty prevailed in her master-servant relationship with flat-mate Childie, a babyish but supportive woman.
The nurse’s punishments for Childie, such as making her eat a cigar butt, left the audience feeling little sympathy for Sister George. TV producer Mrs Mercy Croft was played with a kind of no-nonsense caring by Frances Moulton. She seemed to tolerate Sister George, but was much more enamoured with Childie. It was not made completely clear how far Mrs Croft’s affections for Childie stretched. The baby doll figure’s apparent switch in affections may have sprung from Sister George’s losing streak.
Most of the lighthearted moments came from fortune teller Madame Xenia [Joan Braddock], with flailing arms and fiery manner. She seemed the most trustworthy character in the play. One of the funniest scenes was a Laurel and Hardy routine by Childie and George respectively. This injected much-needed light relief and showed a more carefree side to the grumbling nurse.
Wick Theatre’s first night performance last Wednesday left me slightly confused, but gave plenty of food for thought.