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Theatre Review: The Little Plays: Lost and Found

By Richard Johnston | 3rd April 2018

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I have lived in York for 8 Years and throughout that time there has always been a vibrant and healthy theatre scene, bubbling away under the surface of the city’s daily focus on historical tourism and dining experiences. As the arts scene in York rises from strength to strength, however, there are increasingly more people getting involved in theatre and film, nurturing their creative talents and calling for wider attention to the scene.

The production of Lost and Found by the YTR Adult Players has typified the spirit and intention of what community theatre should be. Nurturing both local writers and actors to get involved and show their talents and enjoy themselves. Offering up personal creations as a writer and braving the audience to follow a passion for performance art are no easy things to do and deserve immense respect. Yes, in this performance there were a few lines fluffed and a couple of blocking issues but I really didn’t care, because of the heart and soul that the team had put into the production over a relatively short time and the mixed level of experience in the cast.

I feel it is only fair to mention the entire cast as they all put a great deal of effort into their work.

Andrea Mitchell, Catherine Edge, Charlotte Tomkinson, Clemence Cloarac, Darin Wood, Gillian Oakes, Harry Revell, Jake Telfer, John Speight, Katie Greenbrown, Kerry Maxwell, Jodie Fletcher, Liam Godfrey, Lorna Ward, Nigel Evans, Paul Harrison, Steve O’Neil and Wilma Edwards.

The 9 short plays in this production all focused on slightly different interpretations of the theme which allowed the audience a fresh perspective on each play despite knowing the theme.

The three experienced writers Hannah Davies, Lydia Marchant and Matthew Wignall had all contributed three fantastic and original plays each.

Hannah Davies’ three plays were Finding Time, Pondweed and Forgiveness. Finding Time was well performed but I particularly enjoyed Forgiveness as it was a brutally honest snapshot into childhood bullying and how this can affect people in the long term. I found Jodie Fletcher’s performance very natural and Paul Harrison looked believably troubled by “his” past.

Lydia Marchant’s three plays were Found Out, Lost Weight and Lost Confidence. It was Lost Confidence which I found particularly notable, concerning dealing with the near loss of a child and the shock and self doubt following such an event. There was a strong and supportive performance from Lorna Wood and John Speight had seemingly given his role a great deal of thought and effort.

Matthew Wignall’s three plays were Inheritance, Postcard from the Past and Second Bite of the Cherry. All three plays were humorous with a touch of Matthew’s abstract style but I particularly enjoyed Inheritance. The play offered a clever concept as well as humour and poignancy. The performances from Andrea Mitchell, Kerry Maxwell and Jake Telfer were entertaining and they gelled well with each other.

I will keep an eye out for further YTR Adult Actor Productions and I hope to see further work by all three writers in circulation soon!

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