Ian Kelsey and Nicola Sloane play a newly-wed Yorkshire couple, Jack and Liz, who have crossed the Pennines for their first trip to the seaside mecca of Blackpool. The play follows them – and their changing lives - as they return to the same location over many years of marriage.
Ian thinks the play covers themes we can all relate to: “It’s a very funny play that has been written in such detail about the moments everybody has had on any holiday in England. Then it rains! It’s John Godber’s favourite play he has written so that’s saying something. No pressure!!!!!”
For Nicola, the drama will be a perfect tonic for audiences after months of coping with a pandemic. She said: “It’s just what they need to lift their spirits after the lockdowns. Heart-warming, funny and poignant. Nostalgic really referring to simpler times.”
John Godber's drama will be the first live main house production at Salisbury Playhouse since the pandemic began but Ian doesn’t feel any added pressure: "I feel very honoured to be asked to be part of Salisbury’s return to the theatre. The pressure is just the same as any show to be honest. As I write we are in the technical process where we hand over the show to the crew to work their magic. They have done an amazing job with the set so I can’t wait to get on there and make my magic happen.”
Nicola, however, is feeling the nerves! “It’s an honour to be in the first live production and very exciting. It’s a little nerve-wracking because we’re all out of the habit of performing onstage – but that’s part of the thrill!”
This isn’t the first time Nicola has spent time in Salisbury, the actor was here 15 years ago, but she’s made sure to take time out to make the most of the area again: “I’ve only done the walks, down the path towards Old Sarum and towards the Old Mill and Water Meadows. I can’t wait to go back to Cloud’s Hill, Pepperbox Hill, Mompesson house etc as I’m a national Trust member and love all those old buildings and the beautiful scenery managed but the National Trust.
I love Salisbury and had the happiest time 15 years ago – which is why I was so delighted to be invited back.”
Ian has found a faster way to see the sights, as he explained to Experience Salisbury: “I have brought my motorbike with me for this job and any spare moment I take a different road out and find the brilliant local A roads. Stumbling upon a heard of donkeys before I realised I was in the new forest has been a highlight already.”
September in the Rain runs at Salisbury Playhouse from 16th September to 9th October 2021. Find more details, and ticket information, here.
Sandy sandwiches, stroppy donkeys, crafting exhibitions, discussions about playwrights and fun for the under 5s - it's all happening this September with Wiltshire Creative!