Kevin Alexander has backed a winner with the hilarious Ladies Day as his debut show as Artistic Director at The Royal Court.
Amanda Whittington’s heart-warming comedy sees four Liverpool lasses working in a fish factory and dreaming of a better life. When one of the girls, Pearl, decides upon early retirement, they decide to leave their troubles at home for the day and try their luck at Aintree’s infamous Ladies Day.
Dressed to impress, the girls embark upon a champagne-fuelled day of racing and revelations. A constant stream of laughter is heard from the stalls, as the four women treat the audience to top comedic performances.
The chemistry between the characters is flawless and it’s evident that the four girls got on as well off stage, as they do on – something Roxanne Pallett (Shelley) was keen to point out.
“We’re like a bargain basement version of ‘Sex and The City’,” she laughs when discussing her cast-mates.
“I think that the four characters have that vibe in which everyone can relate to one of them.
“You’ve got someone who’s very vulnerable, a feisty one, someone who says the wrong thing at the wrong time, someone who’s got a secret – each character goes on a real journey.
“There’s a great unity between us, on and off stage. I love these girls and I love my character. Everyone’s got a loud friend like Shelley.”
As she mentioned, Roxanne’s character Shelley certainly is loud and steals the show with her outrageous one-liners.
“Shelley’s a great character to play,” Roxanne revealed, “she idolises the likes of Katie Price and is the kind of girl who will buy a magazine and buy everything from it.
“My outfit is just outrageous. I was actually a judge at Aintree Racecourse this time last year and I’ve been flicking through some pictures – there’s a few girls with their extensions in, all dolled up and then they’re snapped with a portion of chips in one hand and a blue WKD in the other which I think is priceless – that’s Shelley to a T.”
Chatting to Click before the show, Roxanne revealed how she could not wait to start playing larger than life Shelley. “This role is so different from what I normally play,” she says “I usually get roles for either the victim or the villain so it’s nice to play someone so full of life and comedic. It was a real compliment that the director cast me alongside three genuine, authentic scousers.”
The three authentic scousers in question are Royal Court regulars Eithne Browne and Lynn Francis, who both give yet another solid performance and bounce well off one another, and newcomer Angela Simms, who was perfect in the part of ditzy Tony Christie enthusiast Linda.
A special mention must go to Jack Lord, the only male in the cast, who plays an impressive six roles and immerses himself into each; it’s hardly noticeable that the jack the lad tout is played by the same person portraying the hapless, hungry jockey.
Ladies Day is a fantastic, feel good comedy which everyone should be quick to catch whilst it’s out the stalls!
Cast: Roxanne Pallett, Lynn Francis, Eithne Brown, Angela Simms, Jack Lord
Running time: 135 minutes
You may also enjoy: Interview: Roxanne Pallett