A night at the Theatre by the Lake

After looking round the museum in Keswick, browsing in the shops and a stroll in the parks we headed over to Morrel’s Restaurant where we had a table booked for an early evening pre-theatre meal. Like some other diners we had tickets for that evening’s performance at the Theatre by the Lake.

The Theatre “does exactly what it says on the tin” – it’s a repertory theatre situated close to the northern lake shore of Derwent Water. It opened in 1999 with funding from an Arts Council Lottery Fund Grant. It has a main auditorium and a Studio theatre. From May to November every year a resident company of up to 14 actors perform a Summer Season of six plays in repertory.

We’d decided it would be good to take in a play during our stay in Keswick so I’d booked tickets the week before. The play running that week was an adaption of Jane Austen’s tale of manners, matrimony and social standing – Sense and Sensibility. Now I’m not a fan of Austen’s work and had hesitated when looking at the programme but decided to go anyway. I’m glad I did.

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The play was a light-hearted adaption of the novel featuring the entire company, some in multiple roles. It was funny and well acted with some excellent performances. I though Lydea Perkins’ did a convincing job portraying the young Margaret Dashwood. Sarah Kempton and Alice Imelda as her older sister, Elinor and Marianne Dashwood were also very good. Christine Entwisle was also excellent in the contrasting parts of the cold and cruel Fanny Dashwood and the main comic turn, Mrs Jennings.

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The male leads Oliver Mott as at Willoughby and Thomas Richardson as Colonel Brandon both did a good job in portraying characters of whom the audience’s opinion and sympathies changed during the course of the play.

So, despite my initial reservations, this was an enjoyable evening and I’m glad I decided to overcome my prejudice and go ahead an buy the tickets. Sometimes taking a chance leads to a nice surprise!

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9 thoughts on “A night at the Theatre by the Lake

    • There’s only one play I went to see that I can recall that I can see I didn’t like. It was Vertigo by Noel Coward at the Royal exchange in Manchester (where the performances are usually excellent) Might have put me off noel Coward but subsequently saw Hay Fever and Blithe Spirit also at Royal Exchange and they were both very enjoyable. So it certainly shows you shouldn’t be closed minded.

      • Was she the ghost?
        We once stayed in the cottage at Portmerion where Coward wrote the play.
        The production we saw was at the Royal Exchange and Suranne Jones was in the cast. Not sure if your wife was starring though 😉

  1. We’ve been to the Theatre by the Lake a couple of times and not been disappointed, quite the opposite in fact. Hmmmm – it seems a while since we saw a live performance. You’ve got me thinking….

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