GLASGOW may be feeling the cold this week, but at Eastwood Park, the Giffnock Theatre Players are feeling the heat – and the drama – of the deep south.
Following a successful stint with Calendar Girls at the end of last year, the amateur group steps back into the spotlight for its first show of 2013; Tennessee Williams’ Cat On a Hot Tin Roof.
The story focuses on a plantation family home, as Big Daddy returns from the clinic on his 65th birthday, and his children attempt to tell him that he has terminal cancer.
There are already squabbles over shares of the estate, and son Brick has quit his job and turned to drink upon the death of his friend – and the object of his desire – Skipper.
For director Walter Paul, the play is “a powerful piece of drama – and really, Tennessee Williams’ best work, as well as one of the finest pieces of American writing”.
Walter has been drafted in by the Theatre Players for numerous shows since 2001, and he is happy to work with them again and again.
He told Live!: “It’s important to us that we’re staging the original version written by Tennessee Williams.
“It’s a serious subject matter – so when the iconic film version (starring Paul Newman and Elizabeth Taylor) was made in the 1950s, Williams had to write a new version, with a slightly more optimistic ending.
“There are certain subjects which crop up in it – like homosexuality – which wouldn’t have been accepted by censors in the 1950s.
“But latterly, at the end of his life, the playwright said it should always be done as his original version, so that’s what we’re doing”.
The long established am dram group (formed in 1949) stage three shows each year in an attempt to cover a wide range of subjects – and Walter hopes that some high quality drama will draw audiences to Giffnock this week.
He added: “It’s extremely well cast, and Giffnock Theatre Players are so well established because they create a contrast between their shows and make the costumes and scenery.
“You don’t always get that kind of commitment from an amateur club, but I think it will show on Cat On a Hot Tin Roof”.
n The play runs at Eastwood Park Theatre January 23-26 – performances 7.30pm, with a 2.30pm Saturday matinee. Tickets are £8-£10, available from 577 4970 or www.giffnocktheatreplayers.com.