Newport Playgoers’ Ayckbourn Drama, Snake in the Grass Will Get “Right Under Your Skin”

Newport Playgoers Society’s latest production is set to have audiences gripped as a darkly comedic thriller takes to the stage.

“It gets right under your skin,” says Director, Moira Mainwaring of Alan Ayckbourn’s Snake in the Grass. The Ayckbourn drama has plenty of light and shade, set in a sunny garden, but with shadows that creep in as the play progresses to darken the plot, surrounding two sisters and their father’s nurse.

Moira explains, “The three-woman cast explores the resilience the characters need to deal with all that life has thrown at them.

“Ayckbourn portrays the complexity of badly damaged siblings so very well. There are several twists and turns in the plot which I hope will keep you guessing until the end.”

Long-time Playgoers actors Adele Cordner and Ann Harrison will take to the Dolman Theatre stage as sisters Annabel and Miriam.

Adele says of her role, “Annabel is a great character and I’m really honoured to be playing the role for Newport Playgoers Society alongside two fabulous actors. At the beginning of the play, she is brassy, arrogant and constantly belittling her younger sister who she hasn’t seen since they were children, 35 years ago. By the end of the play, she is reduced to a nervous wreck by the stress of the ensuing events.”

Adele, has also directed for Newport Playgoers Society, including most recently The Diary of Anne Frank and is also a writer whose plays The Balloon Girls and My Favourite Dog have been performed by Newport Playgoers Society and Odyssey Theatre Company respectively.

Ann Harrison feels the part of Miriam is different to any she has played before, “It’s what I would call a Bette Davis part, for people who remember this great actor. A real challenge, switching personas throughout the play. A part you can really get your teeth into.

“I have a great director and wonderful cast members. We’ve all pulled together, helping each other in a real team effort.”

Meanwhile, Jennie Crum who has previously featured on television in both Little Britain, Casualty, as well as the film short, Sunday Roast will play Alice. 

“I am thrilled to be back at the Dolman,” says Jennie, who has had three children since last appearing on the Dolman Theatre stage. “It really does feel like a big family here and I feel incredibly lucky to be a part of it.”

 “Alice is such a great character to play as there is so much more to her than first meets the eye!”

No doubt, Snake In The Grass will have plenty to keep the audience enthralled as Newport Playgoers Society are no strangers to the world of Alan Ayckbourn, counting his dramas Role Play, Time of Your Life and Things We Do for Love among their previous successes.

Audiences can meet the characters of Alice, Annabel and Miriam as Alan Ayckbourn’s Snake in the Grass plays Newport’s Dolman Theatre from March 8th – March 11th, 2023.

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