Titchfield re-use award winning Fringe props

Titchfield Festival Theatre are performing Dylan Thomas' Under Milkwood from August 31 until September 10
Titchfield Festival Theatre are performing Dylan Thomas' Under Milkwood from August 31 until September 10
Sarah Earnshaw as Betty and Joe Pasquale as Frank Spencer in Some Mothers Do 'Av 'Em. Picture by Scott Rylander

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Titchfield put on a lot of productions. In the last two months alone they have put on three; Much Ado About Nothing, Twelfth Night and soon to be showing, Under Milkwood by Dylan Thomas.

So, if they re-use popular ideas from the past, it would be understandable.

Kevin Fraser, who is directing the forth coming production, decided to include a giant bed that won him a Fringe First Award, in 1997 at Edinburgh.

He explains: ‘It’s really unique. The bed wasn’t fully made when the photograph was taken, but in the play you see it transforming into a hill. It’s tried and tested and there’s a new audience we are reaching that don’t know anything about it.

‘We know it works. We know we’re on to a winner and you can understand the story better from it.’

But the bed has its purpose, as Under Milkwood is a tale of dreams.

Kevin says: ‘It starts off with Captain Cat in bed while dreaming. It’s all about the dreaming in this giant bed and all the towns folk hop out of the bed and actually it opens up to come a town.

‘I won a Fringe First Award for the bed in 1997, although that was with another amateur company.’

They specifically choose the play because it was one of their first at Titchfield Abbey ten years ago, and as they chose the plays for their tenth anniversary, it seemed appropriate.

He explains: ‘Under Milkwood was one of the first plays we did in Titchfield Abbey about 10 years ago, so we decided to include it as people still remember it.

‘It’s one of my favourites. Everyone seems to love the language. It’s beautiful, and the alliteration is fantastic. It’s a wonderful piece of English literature.

What Kevin is really looking forward to is the treat they are giving the audience after each show.

‘We are going to serve fish and chips at the end,’ he says, ‘because it’s quite a short play. It’s about an hour and 30 minutes I think, so because of that we will give them a fish and chip supper. It will be like coming to a Welsh town.

‘It’s only going to cause a problem when someone asks for the vegetarian option, because then they will just get chips.’

Under Milkwood runs from August 31 until September 10.

Tickets cost from £7 to £11 from Titchfield Festival Theatre on (01329) 556156 or visit titchfieldfestivaltheatre.co.uk.