Alan Ayckbourn's Family Album

We were so pleased to be back at the Old Laundry in Bowness-on-Windermere, for Alan Ayckbourn's latest play: Family Album. 

The playwright follows three generations of women in one home, from 1952 to 2022 - Peggy, Sandy and Alison, grandmother, mother and daughter. 

Ayckbourn’s 87th play makes masterly use of time, space and the audience’s imaginations. Set in the living room of a middle-class south London home, it presents the experiences of three generations of women in one family, reflecting through them wider social changes in the world beyond. The different generations are on stage at the same time although they are unaware of each other.

As I watched the play I found myself thinking of Philip Larkin's wonderful poem This Be The Verse:

They f**k you up, your mum and dad.   
    They may not mean to, but they do.   
They fill you with the faults they had
    And add some extra, just for you.

But they were f**ked up in their turn
    By fools in old-style hats and coats,   
Who half the time were soppy-stern
    And half at one another’s throats.

Man hands on misery to man.
    It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can,
    And don’t have any kids yourself.

I really enjoyed Ayckbourn's latest offering; the Stephen Joseph Theatre cast was magnificent. We chuckled all the way through; although we were also moved by the performances.