Production by Ellesmere Port Musical Theatre Company

Review of OUR DAY OUT

9th June 2018

Our Day Out

Date 6th July 2012

Society Footloose Musicals

Venue Ellesmere Port Civic Hall, Ellesmere Port

Type of Production Musical

Director Liz Legerton

Musical Director Craig Price

Report Author: Budge Grounsell

Choreographer: Sue Hickman-Germon

Willie Russell wrote “Our Day Out” as part of the BBC’s Play for Today series in 1977 and it has been repeated several times by popular demand. The musical version appeared in 1983, Willie Russell who was a teacher was able to draw heavily on his experience in teaching in a deprived area and social deprivation and what it does to children and adults is evident in his writing not only from “Our Day Out” but also from the more famous “Blood Brothers” This is not an easy piece to stage; it has various locations a coach, shop, zoo and Conway castle all of which form an integral part of the story.

Footloose used a minimal amount of scenery to produce the right atmosphere and Director Liz Legerton used it to good effect. The director also handled her young cast, at a guess aged from 8 to 16 with skill, and they kept their discipline on stage which is not always easy. They also largely acted as their own stage hands and did this in such a way that it did not detract from the action. I am not going to mention individual names as all did so well, suffice to say the ”bus driver” the “bored kids” Colin's two fans and the “teachers” all made a great contribution but let’s face it the whole cast contributed to the success of the production.

In case any of the audience wondered about the significance of Mrs Briggs destruction of the film at the end, well it might have spoiled her image as the more liberal “Mrs Kay" points out when the pictures are developed and show her to be less of the martinet.

The message is of course that her tough attitude is designed to make them try harder to escape their environment, not to be cruel. Craig Price the musical director did his usual good job and choreographer Sue Hickman-Germon moved her charges well. No show can be successful without a strong backstage team and Footloose have got one. Well done to everybody concerned on and off stage.

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