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David Porter » Reviews » My Mother Said I Never Should

My Mother Said I Never Should

Sewell Barn Theatre, Norwich

Review published in the Eastern Daily Press, 11 June 2011.

A play about mothers and daughters, grandmothers and granddaughters, spanning four generations is an ambitious task to make believable. This one is totally absorbing and a masterpiece of writing.

The narrative moves effortlessly from the early 20th century when the woman who is to become the grandmother (generation one) is born, to the late, when the baby (generation four) arrives.

The tale hangs on the decision of the mother (generation three), single, to give up the baby to be raised by her mother (generation two) to make a career for herself, with the repercussions following as the years take their toll.

High energy, superb timing and pace are sustained by the four women throughout. In age order down, Jenny Hobson, Ginny Porteous, Louise Brighton and Kate Butcher are consummate performers, racking up the tension in the proximity that the Sewell Barn brings.

The wounds of decisions made years ago, the troubles of wartime and absent men across the ages, the way women get on with their duties, generational guilt and family bonds are captured beautifully, with some excellent directional devices from Michelle Montague.

It is a study in life, a cracking night out.

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