He’s done from “soap” to Shakespeare so tackling the role of Wal in Hotel Sorrento is something Dennis Coard is very familiar with.
Wal is a key character in the play which centres around his family and his three daughters. Two of the daughters have moved to England and to America and the third is a single Mum to a teenage son, living at home with Dad and ostensibly his carer.
“The family secret that drives the girls away makes them come back and eventually all the skeletons come out of the closet. This is a play about family and asks the question whether there is a need to go away in order to succeed,” Coard said.
Coard said he identified with the role of Wal as a man who is just making his way through life and realises that women are doing the same thing.
“Women are not the enemy. They are just doing the best they can,” he said.
The show comes to Redland Performing Arts Centre at 7.30pm on September 22, as part of an Australian tour.
“The regionals resonate with the plot. It’s set in a regional area that has everything they (the characters) want and they are suspicious of the ‘big smoke’. The value is in the lifestyle – where they live and where they are born and family,” Coard said.
Coard said he was looking forward to visiting the Redlands for the first time.
“This play should sit well with the area. We hope people come out to say hello to us in the foyer afterwards,” he said.
Hotel Sorrento features a large cast of well-known faces including Joanne Booth (Neighbours, House Husbands), Ruth Caro (Home & Away, The Glass Menagerie), Kim Denman (All My Love, West Side Story) and Mike Smith (The 39 Steps, Billy Elliot – The Musical). The theatre piece will be directed by Denny Lawrence, who previously directed much-loved productions Always … Patsy Cline, Shirley Valentine and Educating Rita at RPAC.
This tour will represent the 20th anniversary of HIT Productions’ first production of the play.
Tickets are $20 - $45. Bookings can be made by calling the RPAC Box Office on 3829 8131 or by visiting www.rpac.com.au (booking fees are $4.30 by phone and $5 online per transaction).