Glorious, Lowther Pavilion
A virtuoso performance from Sarah Jane Stone carries all before it in this very amusing production by the Lytham Anonymous Players.
Peter Quilter’s 2005 comedy, set in 1944, is based on the true story of Florence Foster Jenkins, a New York heiress whose dream is to become an operatic diva, despite a complete inability to sing in tune.
Sarah Jane Stone inhabits the role completely, displaying a comic mastery of missing every note in her private world of self-delusion.
Huw Rose, as her accompanist Cosme McMoon, makes the most of many of the wittiest lines, his whole persona both disguising and yet revealing that he is gay.
He excels in his unexpected monologue to end the story.
Jeff Redfern is suitably very English as Florence’s somewhat unlikely gentleman friend and there is strong support from Kirsten Burnett and Caz Thompson.
Mandy Hall produces a fine performance as the bespectacled and bizarre Dorothy who is complicit in building up Florence’s insulation from reality.
You find that you are laughing at Florence, almost as if watching an old-style freak show, and have to pinch yourself to realise that the play is about real people and real events.
A skilled show by an accomplished cast.