Dovery Manor Museum, Doverhay, Porlock, Somerset, TA24 8QB. United Kingdom
Dovery Manor Museum © 2018 All rights reserved.
Registered Charity Number 1079760
The audience in Dovery Manor Museum, Porlock, were treated to a champagne reception followed by a delightful evening of April related poetry, songs and stories.
The atmospheric solar was the setting for a 1949 house party, ‘hosted’ by John Hill, during which the guests, played by The Museum Players, entertained with charming renditions of songs from the period and a diverse selection of poetry from Robert Browning to Robert Frost and Thomas Hood to Joyce Grenfell.
To open the evening's entertainment, the audience were asked to read aloud 'April Snippets' some of which were important dates in the lives of some of our greatest poets and the others brief snatches of their work. After this they settled back to enjoy excerpts from poetry and prose on an April theme.
Chris de Vere Hunt sang ‘April in Paris’ beautifully and was joined by Bill Ball in a lovely duet of ‘All in the April Evening.’ Members of the cast read a selection of witty and poignant poems with empathy and skill, including Penny Kelham and John Hill who combined forces to great effect for Vita Sackville West's ‘From the Garden.’
After this, the genteel nature of the house party was temporarily interrupted by the arrival of Neville and Bert, 'gardeners on the estate', exuberantly played by Mark Palmer and Jane Hill. They brought their own poetic renditions to add to the fun, along with Neville's ferret!
Further songs, performed by cast and audience together, included the amusing ‘Gardener’s Hymn’, ‘April Love’ and a rousing chorus of ‘It was a Lover and his Lass’. John Thorne's spirited rendition of ‘Mr. Mole’ had the audience laughing before Nigel and Christine Greenwood performed a moving and humorous ‘local’ version of ‘I Remember it Well.’
Enchanting music was provided by Louise Linge, piano, and Ruth Mounfield, flute. The entertainment was compiled and written by Lita Strampp and John Thorne. Props were provided by The Blue Violin Company and The Garden Room and costumes by Marjorie Steeds.
All in the April Evening