big chance

Moa Myerson as  Lesley, a wannabe star who finds her big break in the movies is in . . . should perhaps say, a more specialised market

Talking Heads

Malvern Theatres


A lot can change in a mere few months and my last trip to the theatre at the beginning of the year was a completely different affair to the Covid times in which we now live and breathe.

In February as Storm Dennis continued to wreak havoc across England. washing up ghost ships and forcing people to evacuate their homes, Bond Girl Britt Ekland spoke to the shadows at Malvern Theatres with her unnerving performance as Mrs Pleasant in The Cat and the Canary.

Now, amidst a Coronavirus Pandemic, theatre going has changed somewhat with socially distanced seating, masked audience members and hand sanitising around every corner, but how delightful to be back watching Alan Bennett’s Talking Heads presented by Malvern Theatres Young Company.

First in the double bill was A Chip in the Sugar where Graham Whittaker, played by Rhys Harris-Clarke, gave a downhearted snippet into his life as a doting middle-aged son who worries for his 72 year old mother’s bowel movements, which were unpredictable at Morecombe, so what on earth would they be like on honeymoon in Tenerife?

Cardigan wearing Graham thinks the world of his ‘mam’ and longs to be number one forever despite Frank Turnbull’s intentions. Rhys’s northern accent is spot on and great delivery “Never mind about the stockings, what about your pelvis?”

But then again Mam’s Dr Choudhury did say that the best way to avoid a broken hip is to keep a flexible mind.


Rhys Harris-Clarke as Graham whose safe life revolving around his aging mother comes under threat

after the appearance of her old flame

Straight through with no interval we slide to Her Big Chance where Moa Myerson’s Lesley, innocently traverses the acting jungle armed with a harpoon gun. After a ‘Crossroads’ the path to success leads to a vulnerable Lesley beneath the covers and compromised to achieve her big break as Travis. She spends a lot of time topless and shoots a man with a harpoon gun but with a 38 inch bust anything is possible in the West German film market.

Despite the dated script in these #MeToo times, the simple storytelling was a joy to watch without too many deep emotional pulls in this uncertain virus patch.

Moa, incidentally, was also excellent when she appeared is Mave in Mooney and his Caravans last month in Malvern's first testing of the waters after lockdown. Review here.

Alan Bennett’s Talking Heads, directed by Nic Lloyd, is at Malvern Theatres until Saturday October 17th, for tickets call the Box Office on 01684 892277 or online HERE

Emma Trimble


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