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Ignition Theatre


Call Me Dusty

This November is the 50th anniversary of the start of Dusty Springfield’s solo career. The iconic singer, who for millions was the definitive pop diva, launched her first solo hit record ‘I Only Want to Be With You’ on November 8, 1963. Celebrating this fact is a new play by Pembrokeshire playwright, Derek Webb, called Call Me Dusty which is being performed in two local theatres within days of the actual anniversary: Theatr Mwldan on Wednesday November 6 and the Torch Theatre on November 13.

The South Wales Evening Post said of it: “The true success of the piece lay in the universal appeal of its writing. Because ultimately Derek Webb has written a heartfelt play of a young girl who succumbs to the lure of stardom which will appeal to fans of good drama regardless of any prior knowledge of the star at its heart.”

But it hasn’t only had critical plaudits, it has been enthusiastically received by Dusty fans too.

“Very good – they used Dusty's voice and I give them credit for recognising the 50th anniversary.” said one. After seeing the show in Barry, another fan said: “It was good that the show used the original recordings. The time meant that whole significant episodes in her life such as the Fox theatre days had to be covered in just minutes but Dusty's life journey was told in a way that drew you in. I don't know how accurate it was but a lot of it most definitely was. The script was very accurate when dealing with the South Africa trip and the Dusty in Memphis album because it used words that I've heard spoken directly by Dusty and Jerry Wexler. Apart from the Dusty character there were two others (one male and one female) who played a variety of roles. All in all, a very enjoyable evening.”

Call Me Dusty attempts to disentangle myth and facts, and begin to understand the very complex character who was Dusty Springfield. Born Mary Isabel Catherine Bernadette O’Brien – she was a quiet, chubby, Catholic convent girl – but one who desperately wanted to be a film star like Betty Grable or a singer like Peggy Lee. In the play the two halves of her character are explored – the shy schoolgirl and her alter ego with her extravagant black mascara and backcombed hair; while at the same time celebrating the tremendous music she produced, which still ranks amongst the best of its kind.

Fluellen Theatre Company

Shakespeare? That’s a laugh!

Fluellen Theatre Company returns to the 4U/theatre Gwaun in Fishguard on Saturday October 26th with a new production of Shakespeare’s rollicking comedy: ‘The Merry Wives of Windsor’.

Legend has it that Queen Elizabeth I liked the character of Sir John Falstaff so much that she personally requested that Shakespeare write a play about “Sir John in love”.

If the story is true, then the Bard rose to the occasion by bringing the decadent aristocrat of King Henry IV Parts 1 and 2 back from his reported death in Henry V, depositing him in contemporary Windsor and letting him run amok amongst the female population. Well, Mistresses Ford and Page, to be precise.

However there are two major impediments to Sir John’s unique seduction techniques. One is that the ladies are married, and the other is that they are well aware that he is not only after their bodies but their money as well. Cue great comedy as they collude to lead him on to his comeuppance.

‘The Merry Wives Of Windsor’ is one of Shakespeare’s broadest comedies” says Fluellen`s Artistic Director Peter Richards. “In this play his object was to have great fun and make the his audiences laugh. And that is exactly what we are setting out to do in this new production.”

Christopher Hale stars as the gargantuan anti-hero Falstaff, with Claire Novelli and Jayne Stillman pulling the strings as the merry wives. Swansea’s favourite funster Kevin Johns joins in the hilarity as the Welsh parson Sir Hugh Evans, and with Stefan Pejic in close attendance as the incompetent Slender, the stage is set for an unmissable and thoroughly accessible Shakespearean comedy.

The cast also includes Mark Cainan, Steve Grey, Rachel Sarah Lewis, Kerry Mills, James Rocky, Rob Stradling and Katherine Weare.

The fun starts at 7.30pm and tickets are available from the 4U Box Office at £8 (£7 FOTG members and £6 students)

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