If you’ve been feasting on BBC iPlayer during lockdown and enjoying the delights of Alan Bennett’s Talking Heads, it’s worth taking six minutes out of your social isolation to watch Putney Theatre Company’s The Plague Thing by Papatango New Writing Prize nominee Marcia Kelson who also directs this little gem.
Hudson’s performance is endearing.
It’s a simple yet moving vignette that gives a glimpse into the world of Enid, delicately, sensitively and momentarily amusingly played by Carol Hudson. Confined to one of the infamous care homes, with which we are all now so familiar, ‘the plague’, as she calls it, and the associated restrictions, have altered her familiar routines. She has noticed the differences but also adapted very well to the changes, which are something of a novelty. For just a few minutes, she wants to share all of this with you.
Hudson’s performance is endearing. She immediately draws us into her world with reminiscences of life before the plague, the now abandoned tradition of tea time with songs and the mystery of the woman who used to visit her and the people who the staff say call her, that through her failing memory she doesn’t know, and so believes her carers to be mistaken.
She has a stoicism and ability to dream that has seen us all through the plague in our different circumstances and makes her quite inspirational. If it weren’t for the lockdown I’d like to visit her and have a cup of tea. Instead, I’ll put the kettle on and listen to it again. After all, it’s only six minutes and it’s delightful.