Polegate Party

Richard Harris’s Party Piece is also a bit of a period piece, with its 1990s suburban barbecue, but the Polegate Drama Group brought it to life in an enjoyable production last week, writes Kevin Anderson.

Director Jim Dobell – who also designed the carefully detailed set – has worked hard on timing and on the smart interplay between the actors, all of whom get the balance just right between character and caricature. Party givers Michael and Roma are convincingly played by Ian and Jane Parratt.

Michael and Roma, bless them, have worked so hard to prepare the perfect barbecue But almost all the guests cry off, except for a wonderfully racy Sue Talmadge in rugger kit, and an absurdly bluff David Buck – seen many times on the Polegate stage, but never before in a Tommy Cooper fez. This group has served and entertained its community for a remarkable 48 years, and some original members were still involved in last week’s Party Piece. They deserve a little party of their own...