So! I expect you’ve heard the latest? The Foxy liaisons with a handsome polo player? Then there’s been whispers of the goings-on between a certain local Nordic blonde and a Yobo from Banbury – outrageous! And of course I can barely mention Horley’s very own Mrs Robinson. Such bare-faced cradle-snatching! I can’t imagine she’ll be at the coffee morning anytime soon. And if she is those buns of hers will remain untouched. Then there’s the talk of a certain local landowner, well known to you and I. He was seen roaring with rage and ripping a bridal veil from the head of some poor mop-topped maid. Incroyable! His mother will have something to say about that: he’s not too big for a spanking. The on-dit, of course, suggests that all of this is just make-believe, some sort of mid-summer charm, but I can tell you, my darlings, that it’s all true. Even that nice, normal couple, something to do with Essex? He works in the City. Anyway. Into leather. Black.
You know who’s behind the mischief, don’t you? Tessa Howell. Sprite-like and bewitching; inexhaustible and occasionally incorrigible. Husband is terribly attractive. You may know her from before – she’s the director of the Horley Footlights, and one year, one play, of course, she pulled off an extremely risqué scene with one of Horley’s yummiest-mummies…yes, that scene. During rehearsal the assembled were agog; one old boy had to be carried out halfway through – his heart, you know. But Lord! The size of his… smile.
So, anyway, this new play is Shakespeare. Mid Summer Night’s Dream, so allows for lots of gorgeousness with the sets and the costumes. There’s apparently a veritable army of fairies involved – all children filched from the village – and they run about the church – our beautiful St. Ethelreda’s – bare-foot and bedecked with flowers. They barely seem to be choreographed, and appear quite untamed, like little wild things, brought in from the woods.
I do rather approve of the music though: the whole thing is set to Mendelssohn. Quite ravishing. And the chap known for his marvellous organ – yes, I know – is to play the piano.
Of course, Madame Howell has messed considerably with the original script. Pared-down, I believe it’s called, apparently so we all understand it, even if we don’t know the play. Anyway, later, I shall resume my post back stage (quite out of sight), and let you know the real story behind the scenes. Someone ought to tell her – Tessa Howell and your outrageous cast: beware I shall be making notes……