Venue : Woodrush High School
Date : March 1966
Genre : Farce
Lighting & Sound Effects
‘Sailor Beware’ – Wythall Society’s Success
A message from the chairman of Wythall Dramatic Society production of “Sailor Beware" expresses the hope that the audience will leave the theatre full of hearty chuckles.
It is hope fulfilled.
Much of the success of the production is undoubtedly due to Estelle Shutkever’s playing of Emma Hornett, a nagging mother-in-law – truly a mother-in-law who would deter any prospective son-in-law.
The production has all the ingredients of a good comedy, a forthcoming marriage, a music hall type of mother-in-law and various other odd characters.
It is a well tried formula but on which could easily misfire if any of the players failed in their interpretation of their characters or if the co-ordination so essential to successful comedy was missing.
Credit is due to producer Ted Pedvin that the action kept moving quickly and there were none of those awful moments when the audience feel duty bound to laugh – more out of sympathy than amusement.
Well worthy of mention were Brenda Castle as Edie Hornett and Bob Aldridge as henpecked Henry Hornett both of who collected their full quota of laughs.
All in all a pleasant evening – sound effects and sets would perhaps warrant a little more attention but this is a small.
Unknown, Local Paper: Spring 1966
Make 'em laugh is one of the old stage maxims for success...
Make 'em laugh is one of the old stage maxims for success and certainly Wythall Dramatic Society lived up this with their presentation of "Sailor Beware" last week at Woodrush High School. In their programme this well known farce is described as a "family Romp" and the romping provided a really good evenings entertainment for the families who came to see it.
Estelle Shutkever was remarkably formidable as Emma Hornett, particularly since in real life she is quite small. She also managed to convey the underlying good heartedness of the character, giving a very good performance in this energetic role.
Brenda Castle as her fluttery sister-in-law was a good foil to Emma and had no difficulty in getting laughs. Albert Tufnell A.B. was very well played by Gerry Solomon, in his first season with the company, and he made the part of the apprehensive sailor bridegroom very convincing as well as amusing.
His bride to be was Pauline Hollins, also a newcomer, who proved a good choice for the role, which can be a bit of a bore if overdone: She handled her floods of tears as a jilted bride very well.
Both Jack Parramore as Albert's Scottish shipmate, Carnoustie Bligh and Bob Aldridge as Henry Hornett were a little stilted in the beginning but improved as the play progressed. Henry gaining the audiences laughing approval when he defies Emma and goes off for a drink with the lads to return home merrily drunk.
Although Sybil Parr gave a good performance, she was one felt a little mature for the part of Shirley's amorous bridesmaid, Daphne Pink. This was however, a small point, as the huge motifs on the walls of the set didn't give the impression of wallpaper, and tended to draw the eye rather irritatingly.
Ted Pedvin's production was fast moving, with the players making full use of their lines to gain the wholehearted support and obvious enjoyment of the audience, one of whom was heard to say, when leaving. "This is first of their plays I have ever seen, but I shall certainly be at the next one."
V.L., Local Paper: Spring 1966