Global Productions present
A comedy by Richard Harris
Roger has enough trouble assembling his cricket team to play against the British Railways Maintenance Division Yeading East, without sorting out the personal problems occurring amongst their various wives and girlfriends. But as the afternoon wears on, tempers begin to fray, wickets are missed and rain stops play.
Outside Edge by Richard Harris is a thought-provoking comedy with some larger than life characters and was so successful that it spawned a popular TV series.
The award-winning Global Productions turn up to bat with this hilarious comedy, fresh from their show-stopping successes here at the Harlow Playhouse, including Noises Off by Michael Frayn and more recently Agatha Christie’s The Hollow.
Thurrock Drama Festival - JUNE 2011
BEST DIRECTOR: Michael Philips
BEST ACTRESS: Elaine Elliott
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Jennifer Dorian
BEST STAGE PRESENTATION
ROGER - Richard Holliss
Harlow Playhouse Lighting Design - Oliver Quintrell
Gobal Productions would like to thank:
CHEATING husbands, burning cars and boozed-up batsmen. It's just not cricket, is it?
But as a gentle satire of suburban middle class mores, Richard Harris's classic comedy Outside Edge is up there with some of Ayckbourn's best-loved work.
Of course, as the playwright himself was at pains to point out, the play has very little to do with the thwack of leather on willow. But as a backdrop for the trials, tribulations and temper tantrums of a hysterical bunch of Middle Englanders, the village green on a lazy Saturday afternoon is hard to beat.
It is the brilliantly simple juxtaposition between this reassuringly cosy setting and the increasingly intolerable characters invading it that drives this most straightforward of comedies, which may have been sparse on big belly laughs but more than tickled the ribs of an audience clearly immersed in a typically engaging performance by the supremely talented team at Global.
True, the play could never be described as taxing on either cast or audience, but without a cast of solid all-rounders and several star turns this could have merely been a pleasant but forgettable foray into satire for beginners.
The indomitable Richard Holliss was once again on sparkling form as increasingly irritable club captain Roger, whose whiter-than-his-whites image and ostensibly perfect marriage to pillar of the community Miriam (another wonderful performance from Elaine Elliott) are both hit for six by eyebrow-raising revelations about a sordid liaison in Dorking.
Playing his role with a straight bat and relying on his impeccable comic timing and easy charm for laughs, Holliss could have stolen the show were it not for two excellent performances from Chris Millington - brilliant as bawdy but cuddly spin-bowler Kevin - and Susan Macpherson, whose outrageous performance as his broad-shouldered, brick-laying wife Maggie drew the night's biggest laughs.
Elsewhere, David Reed was laudably louche as rakish ladies' man Dennis, while the ever-reliable Keith Cummings and an ice-cool Rose Floyd had a simmering rapport as fretful Bob and his acid-tongued wife Ginnie.
Although this was hardly a stretch for such a talented company, especially one with such a flair for comedy, Outside Edge deservedly bowled over the audience with another first-class delivery.
Chris Moss -
The Harlow Star
Thurrock Drama Fest: Outside Edge: Wins by an innings!
ITS GAME on this week at the Minack where Global Productions are playing the British Railways Maintenance Division Reading East in Richard Harris's cricketing comedy Outside Edge.