Bringing laughter and warmth to the Bronte home
“Cold and dreary”, “The wind never stops blowing!” “and there are midges”. So say the Bronte sisters about their home in Haworth in Blake Morrison’s We Are Three Sisters. Writing at twilight and sewing dutifully during the day, they live surrounded by gravestones, chauvinistic men and consider the immortality of writers.
Our own Bronte girls, Kate Davies, Maye Battersby and Esther Weetman have had fun bringing the siblings to life at the expense of the love-lorn doctor, the sweet-talking curate, the pompous teacher and of course their troubled brother Branwell. All watched over by the pistol firing Patrick Bronte.
But it is Verity Mann as Lydia Robinson, Branwell’s love interest, who is having the most fun. She flounces and pouts and looks down her nose at the parsonage residents. Her bete noire is Tabby, played by Lisa Kay, the Bronte housekeeper who gives as good as she gets. Amusingly, Sam Reid as Branwell (seen last season in The Graduate) is onto his second Mrs Robinson!
Re-visiting Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall has also helped to bring this household to life - the models for literary hero, villain and supporting characters are found here in this parlour. And despite the wind, disease and moroseness, I hope we have brought some laughter and warmth to the Bronte home.
Meanwhile set designer, Keith is creating the Parsonage dining room ,Tim is creating a windy soundscape and Bob is shedding light on the whole procedure. Verity and Sandie are hot on the trail of costumes and props and Frank is keeping us all on text.
It is a real delight working with such a talented cast and crew and I hope you enjoy the results of our labours.
We are Three Sisters will be performed by the Saddleworth Players at the Millgate Arts Centre, Delph, from 2 – 9 June. Tickets £9 (£5 students).
Carol Davies, May 18, 2018