Review: Wanderlust, Guildhall Theatre, Derby

gramophones-001Wanderlust is an enchanting show which combines theatre and storytelling to take its audience on an uplifting journey of discovery.

Last year the trio of actors who make up part of The Gramophones Theatre Company, Kristy Guest, Ria Ashcroft and Hannah Stone, went out into the depths of Suffolk and Norfolk armed with a dictaphone on a mission  to bring back exciting tales of real life from the memories of the people they met.

The result was a moving assortment of true stories which they brought back to life on stage with ingenious use of music, words and visual surprises as well as plenty of humour.

The intriguing set, designed by Dorrie Scott, was filled with more than 100 jars containing a token representing each of the stories and had an aura of warmth which enveloped the audience at Derby’s Guildhall Theatre.

As the women and musician Darren Clark dramatise the tales we learn about among others an adventurer lost on Ben Nevis battling against the snow; an elderly man who remembers his dancing days and an heroic woman determined to survive an accident and reclaim her old life.

Interwoven into the play are also touching revelations from the actors’ own life journeys.

This show will bring a smile to your lips, a tear to your eye and leave you pondering what life stories you may have to tell.

The director was Christopher Neil, assistant director Kath Akers, projection designer Barret Hodgson, technician Ben Dew and assistant designer Bryony McCombie Smith.

The production can be seen at Belper School on May 14 as part of the Belper Arts Festival and Holymoorside Village Hall on May 16. It is also on elsewhere in the region until June 7 so go to to check out the dates.