The story centres around three thirty-something single women – Alexandra, Jane and Sukie - living in the US country town of Eastwick – think the suburban small-town hell of Desperate Housewives but set in the 50s. They drift from one failed relationship to the next, gathering disapproval and ostracism from the small-minded townsfolk, led by the stern, meddling school-ma’am-type, Felicia Gabriel. Bored with their lives, the three friends unwittingly summon up their supposed ideal man in the form of the fantastically charismatic Darryl Van Horne, who quickly seduces all three of them in turn, awakening their long-hidden desires and resulting in the three friends becoming Darryl’s harem. However, Darryl has a dark side and his presence in the town causes much unrest amongst the residents led by Felicia, and when he teaches the three women to use spells to cause mischief, it ends in tragedy (albeit perhaps deserved!). The three women eventually break free of Darryl’s spell, ironically helped by the new-found confidence he helped them find within themselves, and when his behaviour gets out of control they use the powers he taught them to plan his ultimate downfall.
The play is very well performed, with great performances by all the main characters and a fantastic vocal performance by Felicia (Daisy-Bell Mellors). However the star of the show was without doubt Darryl Van Horne, played by Iain Potter, who successfully managed the challenge of playing the role taken so memorably by Jack Nicholson in the film version, with swagger, confidence, and a whole load of charisma – think a (much) younger version of Jack crossed with a bit of Christian Bale and you get the picture.
Overall, a professional, entertaining show with a hugely talented young cast. There are still tickets available for Friday’s matinee and evening show and the Fortune Players do need your support to make this play a success – please do go along and give our talented local students your support. I will leave you with an excerpt from their own circular sent out when the show was almost cancelled due to poor ticket sales:
‘Being "the other university in town," Oxford Brookes always try to stand out with its creativity and energy….(if you can come to see it) you are coming not only to save the Brookes tradition, but also to witness an AMAZING show.’ Here, here.