The Wyre Lady Of Fleetwood
28 May – 27 June
To my mind the name ‘The Wyre lady of Fleetwood’ sounded like something to look forward to, as it went it was the most touching play of the deep interactions and conversations about painful but loving memories. In this Brighton Fringe example they showed the world through photographs and in the documentary style feature movies with changing scenes that all came together; amply providing something of a story telling bonanza. It was so rich with characters that I found myself a little lost at times but that just contributed to the fine levels of performances by all five participants.
The moving 1st scene was of a mother in the throes of life sitting on her stairs with a brew. It was Julie Broadbent’s time to shine. The footage was without sound, only a handful of pictures to tell the story. One scene had a dilapidated lane and in it it viewed a fence to look like bars.
So it began with Dads funeral; we followed the camera around beaches and iconic buildings. Every pan had one more memory one more tear to savour. But this was a tribute to a man who was so well considered by all to be of the greatest influence. She described him in his Armani suit. But she was upset for many reasons, loss of husband, son ran away to London and she was about to resettle after lifetimes in her house.
The screen suddenly changed and we had a different contributor in front of us. I think telling a tale to match the previous one to show the same feelings of life’s fragility. We were combed through Dad going to jail but he didn’t care about that (but that it was a long breakout). He didn’t care, not because he was reckless but that he did care a lot.
Other people knew this story as they had known the successful man and were endeared by his mysterious rise in life; a man so great as to befall many fates of riches and poverties. So to recap the mothers story her husband’s death, her son lost in London and she’s having to leave the family home, tears are in her eyes.
We were shipped out to sea next when his travels took him to fishing in his fathers’ fishing boat. The Wyre lady is a large and impressive vessel of the 1930s. But I think this story meant it as a pleasure cruise. The writer Lita Doolan thought of everything in a dynamic whirlwind of the husband’s life. After these separate but connected dialogues were enacted we returned to the fragile but optimistic mother. Who was set on finding her son or rather for her son finding her in her new economically sufficient place of unfamiliar surroundings.
There was no choice, only to follow the set things that were going to happen for her. She left us with a strong but broken message about this man who many loved for all kinds of reasons. Who achieved and accomplished in his life, a life people wanted to follow and to get to know. He was smarter and wiser in his compassion and carefulness standing out for them and definitely given to any circumstance. The effect rolling from her tongue had us right there to comfort her.