Last night was intended to be a final dress rehearsal, but demand from school parties was so great that the theatre had to open it up, thus losing us another day from our already tight schedule. Seeing the results as a kind of "shakedown" makes me feel very positive about the remainder of the run.
It's been a fraught and nervous few weeks but, as usual, it all seems worth it when the audience cheers - and, bless 'em, they went for it last night all right! We even managed to survive our stage manager being taken ill at the last minute (Get Well soon, Hannah!) which only increased the sense of a backs-to-the-wall triumph.
Playing the title role gives me a (relatively) easy ride from Priestley's complex, wordy and often repetitive script. Others are not so lucky, and it has been an education to witness - not to mention, a privilege to benefit from - their grace under pressure.
So it's Thanks and Well Done to; Ian McCloy, Deborah Rees, Jeni Lewis, Mark Rees, Piers Morgan-Harvey and Hannah Harries. Troupers, all. You make it easy.