On Sunday 26th May Bonkers Theatrical, Kettering perform Behind Closed Doors by Janet Shaw, which explores the engagement of two university students and the domestic violence which permeates both of their families despite their differences. It apparently has 'comedy and tragedy in equal measure'.
On Monday 27th May Gainsborough Theatre Company perform Shakers by John Godber and Jane Thornton. It explores the lives of four waitresses in a cocktail bar which 'is worse than hell'.
On Tuesday 28th May St Austin's Players perform Hobson's Choice by Harold Brighouse. A comedy set in 1915, it tells the story of a widower struggling to control his daughters who work in his shoe shop, a problem that becomes more acute when one of them marries his best cobbler and decide to set up a rival business.
On Wednesday 29th May Trinity Players, Barnsley perform Side Effects by Eric Chappell. This is a comedy with such a description that it's best to just quote it: 'Frank Cook has been booked into a private nursing home, by his wife June, for a week's respite. Whilst there, he encounters the Reverend Paul Latimer who is recovering from a heart transplant and whose odd behaviour is beginning to alarm his wife, Sarah. The young, attractive Tracey might provide the answer. She is convinced that the vicar's new heart belonged to her recently deceased lover Melvin - a fairground 'wall of death' rider!'
On Thursday 30th May Wakefield Little Theatre perform Without Fear or Favour by Reece Andrews. Written by a retired police officer, this play looks at the reality of policing in suburban West Yorkshire in the 1970s.
On Friday 31st May The Yorkshireman Company perform The Grocer's Daughter by Mary Creasey and Jack Land Noble. A 'one woman comedy' set in Grimethorpe, it deals with Connie as she packs away her life before closing the shop for good.
Finally, on Saturday 1st June Halifax Thespians perform Death and the Maiden by Ariel Dorfman. Containing strong language and adult themes, this is another one where I'll just quote the description: 'A riveting psychological thriller set in a country whose people have just wrestled power from a punishing regime of dictatorship in order to establish a democracy. But, what makes a decent society and who, if anyone, should be held to account for past failures?'
So there you go, that's the week in full. From the descriptions, I'm looking forward to The Grocer's Daughter and Death and the Maiden most but I expect the entire week to be enjoyable as it has been for the last two years.
Tickets for the individual shows are £12. A three night pass costs £30 and a seven night pass costs only £49 which works out at £7 a show. I should say thank you to the theatre for not raising this price, keeping the theatre affordable. I think the festival is a wonderful opportunity for people to see the different types of play that the Theatre Royal Wakefield offers and I wouldn't be going back for the third year in a row if it wasn't both great fun and value for money. Watch for my review at the end of the week!
For more information and to book tickets please visit their website.