September 6th 2010
Imagine Glasgow on New Years Eve in 2010, sharp suits mixed with the Ned’s, the wine and beer flowing and happiness all around…
Shoot back 58 years to 1952, a little bit different-the war has not long ended, poverty is in presence and there isn’t much to celebrate.
Four luckless lassies are down on themselves; the Steamie (washhouse) is their only habitat today.
Magrit, Doreen, Dolly and Mrs Culfeathers are women of the world (well Glasgow anyway), they take all of their frustrations of the modern world, antics of the working class husband and wondering where their next make up will come from – out on the washing that they regularly bring in.
They don’t half gossip and could quite easily give Fanny Cradock a run for her money. They all have their hopes and aspirations, not only for themselves but also for the up and coming New Year, and new ideals that the future might bring. A very ‘trench like’ attitude is taken by the ladies as all help out each other with not only the washing but with marital problems; a little bit of drunkenness and post peat bath itching
What might be a simple setting of an auld laundrette is really a fantastic social hub that brings out the best of the hard working women.
The 'hard working' male in this set up is Andy the Janitor, who haphazardly maintains not only the machinery but also the lassies, he is a caring sole but he is overpowered by the female traits.
Ohh and there is music and singing too, all of them having a go in the spotlight at putting the world to rights, and coming up with some interesting answers.
The main interesting answer here is that The Steamie is a brilliant amateur play, performed by a bunch of fantastic "Progressive Players". This is my second time reviewing at the theatre and it just keeps on getting better. The actors were sharp and looked very comfortable up there. With all of them having working or busy lives outside of the theatre, coming nightly to perform for the public, they make it seem so effortless. The humour and the accents (helped along by Robert and Althea Morrison) were very good; you could close your eyes and really imagine five Glaswegians up there.
Tony Roper, who wrote the play also wrote Rab C. Nesbitt. He too would be beaming with this production.
The Steamie is playing from 6th-11th September tickets are £7