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All will be well in the park

PUBLISHED: 18:29 28 May 2008 | UPDATED: 13:18 11 August 2010

YOU CAN tell summer is upon us as it is cold and wet. Perfect lottery type weather for the highlight of Romford theatre, when a massive cast of dedicated players don period costumes and fend off the elements with the annual offering of Shakespeare in the

YOU CAN tell summer is upon us as it is cold and wet.

Perfect lottery type weather for the highlight of Romford theatre, when a massive cast of dedicated players don period costumes and fend off the elements with the annual offering of Shakespeare in the park.

Romford Summer Theatre, now in its 47th year of continuous productions of the bard, has its members in full rehearsals for another Shakespearean comedy, All's Well That Ends Well.

The performances are spread over two weeks next month at the atmospheric rockery in Raphael Park, and continue the tradition almost unique to the area of classical works set under the stars and amid the stunning scenery of the lake and park in Main Road.

All's Well was performed by the group 11 years ago and one of the founders of the theatre, Con Chandler, says it is one of the more unusual.

"We only do Shakespeare's comedies. In fact the only one we have not done is the Tempest, as it starts with a terrible storm.

"Fortunately there are not too many of those in Raphael Park on a balmy summer's evening, though we have come close a couple of times I have to say."

Directed by Vernon Keeble-Watson, the production has 23 characters, foremost is the beautiful daughter of an apothecary, Helena, played by Jessica Randell, who has her sights on the handsome hero, Bertram, played by Will Fox.

"In terms of a comedy, this is very funny and Shakespeare put some superb moments in the script which catch you by surprise.

"I chose this particular play because some of the scenes just stood out and had me falling off the chair laughing when I read them."

The company have always brought Shakespeare to the park and if they had a motto, it would be that his work is not something to be frightened of.

Vernon said: "When he wanted to be funny, he was immaculate in the quality of his writing with so much wit and cutting edge dialogue, it is a joy.

"We have a very strong cast for this production and have all the promise of a wonderful evening."

The performances are once again being sponsored by Romford accountants, Clemence, Hoar, Cummings with six performances on Thursday to Saturday, June 12 - 14, and Thursday to Saturday, June 19 - 21.

Tickets are £7.50 with concessions of £5. Party rates can be arranged by calling Con Chandler on 01708 445126and available at the rockery which at the far end of the lake in Raphael Park.


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