Feb 6, 2019
Category: News
Posted by: Keith Nuttall


'ALLO ALLO' directed by Jennie Scott-Reid , to be performed on Friday 31st May, Saturday 1st June and Sunday 2nd June, at Clavering Village Hall

Clavering Players Website

My Mother Said (Keatley)

This play is about the difficult relationships between mothers and daughters. A story which explores the lives and relationships of four generations of women: Doris, Margaret, Jackie and Rosie. Their loves, expectations and choices are set against the huge social changes of the twentieth century. When Jackie falls pregnant with Rosie, she is unable to cope and hands over the baby to her mother, Margaret. This play looks at the consequences of this secret and each woman's opinion on it. The play has a minimalistic set and is deliberately unrealistic. One of the most unrealistic things in the play is the wasteground scenes where all the characters become children. In the waste ground scenes, Doris becomes the youngest child, then Margaret, Jackie and finally Rosie; thus, some viewers had said that "it works backwards on itself which can get rather confusing."

The main themes of the play are relationships and motherhood. It addresses the issues of teenage pregnancy, career prioritisation and single motherhood. It is also about how the different generations break free from their parent's traditions and culture.

Margaret is caught in the middle; in between her unmarried mother and her daughter, Jackie, who had a daughter (Rosie) despite being unmarried. She knows the hardships of single-motherhood from seeing her own mother and does not want Rosie to grow up in the same way. The stress of the situation eventually kills her.



Doris Partington    –   Judy Curry

Margaret Metcalfe –   Jennifer Scott-Reid

Jackie Metcalfe     –   Nettie Hayes

Rosie Metcalfe      –   Natascha Scott-Reid


Director              -     Emma James


A REVIEW by Alex Day

(The Herts and Essex Observer)

'Players tackle mother of all family dramas'

In today's 'Sex and the City' and chick lit-infested culture which seems to dictate that all women are slightly batty PR Executives trapped in some love triangle or other and obsessed with shopping and shoes, the all-female production 'My Mother Said I Never Should' is a real blast of welcome reality.

But that's probably something to do with the fact that Charlotte Keatley's play, performed by the Clavering Players at the village hall over three nights last week, was written 22 years ago. Not that you'd know. This   exploration of the conflicts - both internal and external - surrounding women and their role in the family, still feels fresh, which underlines the timeless nature of the issues tackled. And the Players' four-strong cast   dealt with the complex and touching story about the relationship between four generations of mothers and daughters - told in rapidly-shifting timeframes - with great skill and dexterity.

Judy Curry brought true depth and nuance to the most senior character, Doris; frosty and formal with her daughter, Jennifer Scott-Reid's Margaret, yet impish and loving with her great-granddaughter.

Jennifer Scott-Reid ably demonstrated the conflicts of a woman looking after granddaughter Rosie as her own, while both resentful and envious of her own daughter's independent, career-driven life. She was   particularly effective in later scenes, hiding her illness and the pain of a divorce while trying to prove herself in full-time employment. And Nettie Hayes as Jackie, Rosie's real mother, was excellent as the first of her family's women to embrace a more modern lifestyle, a successful existence undermined by longing for the little girl who thinks she's her sister.

Youngest cast member Natascha Scott-Reid deserves particular credit for a multi-layered performance as she took Rosie from the cradle to young womanhood.

In tandem with some highly effective lighting and direction, these four women filled the village hall with a spellbinding mini-saga of family life through the decades which was haunting, funny and affecting in all the right places.


A REVIEW by Ian Miller

The Clavering Players seemingly love challenges in the plays that they perform. 'My Mother Said I Never Should' by Charlotte Keatley was the mother of them all. But one they most admirably conquered at the Clavering Village Hall on Thursday night, February 19th.

The play is about four generations of women bonded by their family roots and their sex, but bitterly divided and confused by the differing mores and attitudes through four generations. At one point, Doris says “You do what you can for your daughter, but it’s not necessarily what she wants.”
There were just four members in the cast and not only did they have to get their lines, movements and timing just right, but there were dozens of what must have been nightmarish costume changes - as they switched backwards and forwards between adulthood and childhood. Their menfolk were to be heard in the sounds off; a lawnmower and car horns.
Each of the players proved strong in her part. Judy Curry was the bond that held them together; despite her character's oppressive marriage she was assured, poised and yet alarmingly able to revert to childhood at the drop of a folded sheet; complete with pink dress and ridiculous ribbons. Jennie Scott-Reid played the   powerfully controlling mother, until her control crumbled and finally evaporated in an early death. Nettie Hayes played a most convincing art student mother, persuaded by conditions and her own mother to give her only child away. This provides the trauma that drives her relentlessly towards financial success but   emotional barrenness. Natascha Scott-Reid was the young, energetic, bouncy great-granddaughter, daughter/sister - a sheer delight, especially when she bonded with her great-grandmother towards the end of the play.

Emma James, the director, should be congratulated. The audience left with a great deal to think about, having watched a fine performance of an extremely good and well-written play.