The Anniversary

By Bill Macllwraith

Directed by John Kelland

Peformed on Thursday 18 - Saturday 20 March 2004 at Pentyrch Village Hall


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NODA Review of 'The Anniversary'

This was the first opportunity I have had to see our recently affiliated Hilltop Theatre Company perform at the Pentyrch Village Hall, in March, and had a thoroughly enjoyable and interesting evening. A monster, matriarchal mother gathers her family to celebrate her wedding anniversary, albeit that her husband died some years ago. Dysfunctional is too mild a word for this family who regard the annual event with horror and apprehension at the vicious tongue lashing and humiliation they will inevitably experience from mum. Young, rebellious tom, played with drive by Richard Jones, arrives to confront the martinet with his pregnant fiance, Shirley, in a strong and spirited performance by Menna Davies. Brother Terry intends to announce his imminent departure from the family building firm to escape to Canada with his tolerant and long suffering wife and family. Good performances by Steve Williams and Sian Davies, and then there was poor bachelor Henry, with an unfortunate peccadillo for ladies lingerie, nicely underplayed by Phil Davies, to complete this unfortunate family. It all sounds doom and gloom but with the vitriolic, acerbic humour generated by a dominating and sterling performance by Ruth Crowder as mum, the laughs came cascading. I saw the first night (which was not very kind of me) and there were a few gremlins around but it was obvious that the pace would tighten and that the play would become settled and secure. On a small stage the set was excellent and the lighting and effects well done. Welcome and congratulations to Hilltop. I look forward to future visits.

Reviewed by Franks Wooles.


Shirley                     Menna Davies

Tom                          Richard Jones

Henry                       Phil Davies

Terry                        Steve Williams

Karen                       Sian Davies

Mum                         Ruth Crowder


Production Team

Producer/Director                 John Kelland

Assistant Director                 Chris Leach

Directors Assistant               Mary Hampson

Stage Manager                       Wayne Brewer

Assistant Stage Manager    Rhys Stapleton

Lighting                                    Wayne Brewer

Sound                                       Tracy Richards

Properties                                Rhys Stapleton, Paul Hill, Nathan Brown

Business Manager                Ros Jones

House Manager                     Bob Petersen

Front of House                       Members / Friends of Hilltop

Bar Manager                           John Major

Box Office                               Brenda Slaughter