Bill Maxted's Most Excellent Adventure

small flier image of man on skateboard

The Leicester Mercury:

Bill Maxted stubbornly refuses to move on from the early 1970s – and for his wife, Barbara, that is the vinyl straw. For you see Bill, a former senior manager at Rolls-Royce, is boring, set in his ways and obsessed by his vast catalogued record collection. So Barbara leaves him for another man.

Picture of Bill showing Maggie his time chart

Retired Bill, brilliantly portrayed by Chris Wilkinson, offers his services to his local university and meets brash, exciting widow Maggie who, recognising a challenge, decides to drag him kicking and screaming into the 21st century. You need to chill, Bill, says Maggie, energetically played by the excellent Vanya Green. She introduces him to her favourite things, such as Indian food – oh, and the music of Robbie Williams. Tricky, as Bill prefers doing air guitar to Cream and playing the Beatles and Buddy Holly.

Picture of Sharon in bobble hat

As their friendship develops, he opens up to her like he never felt able to during his 30-year marriage. Staid Bill is brought out of himself by the new woman in his life. In a clever, moving finale, on a trip to America organised by Bill, it is finally Maggie’s turn to open up, as she speaks bitterly to her dead husband, by the tomb of John F. Kennedy, the man he most admired.

Superbly written, the witty script moves pacily through interchangeable sets, guaranteeing laughs galore. Full marks to Yellow Leaf Theatre Company for a lively, satisfying production.

Dave Watson (Leicester Mercury)

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