Fun-filled farce puts young Natalie in the family way

PUBLISHED: 10:54 24 October 2008 | UPDATED: 11:26 17 June 2010

When 14 year old Natalie McKay takes to the stage at Tipton Community Hall next week to play St Swithin's School for Girls self-confident pupil Barbara Cahoun, in Tipton Players and Pantomime Society's fun-filled farce Happiest Days of Your Life, she will be part of a cast which also includes her Mum Diana and her Gran Pat.

When 14 year old Natalie McKay takes to the stage at Tipton Community Hall next week to play St Swithin's School for Girls self-confident pupil Barbara Cahoun, in Tipton Players and Pantomime Society's fun-filled farce Happiest Days of Your Life, she will be part of a cast which also includes her Mum Diana and her Gran Pat.

John Dighton's famous farce, which opened at London's Apollo Theatre in March 1948, tells how St Swithin's are billeted with Hilary Hall School for Boys shortly after the end of the Second World War. The staff of both schools try desperately hard, but in vain, to conceal from visiting parents that boys and girls are housed together.

Barbara has a deep admiration for her young English teacher, Joyce Harper (played by Diana), and tries to protect her from the advances of Hilary Hall's youngest teacher Dick Tassell. Pat plays Mrs Sowter whose son Cyril is a pupil at Hilary Hall.

Natalie is finding rehearsing for Happiest Days great fun, her posh character very different to the real life Natalie.

Having first seen Pat Hamilton-Cox in the Tipton Players' delightful Alan Ayckbourn comedy How the other half lives in the early 1980s, I look forward to seeing her with Diana, a highly-talented actress and up and coming youngster Natalie in TIPP's Happiest Days of Your Life, directed by Doris Russell, which runs from Wednesday, October 29, to Saturday, November 1 at 7.30pm.

Tickets are available from Stagestruck, Ottery St Mary Tipton Stores or from Ann Knight - telephone (01404) 812040.

Roger Simmonds

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