Association of Community Theatre


Crewe Amateur Musicals Society


Director: Sean Johnson Hargreaves

Musical Director: Treona Holden


Lerner and Loewe’s musical based on Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion was once regularly performed by amateur theatre groups. Productions at that time, where similar in presentation, were mostly influenced by the style of the 1965 film starring Rex Harrison and Audrey Hepburn. Thankfully the resting of the show has now left a blank canvas for new productions.


This director brought a refreshing interpretation to the piece, the class barriers were re-examined (especially in the Ascot scene). The drama was naturally delivered, giving a greater truth to the story. Fredrick Loewe was a German, born in Berlin, was brought up in the musical world of European Operetta, and this is reflected in his music. The MD captured the very essence of Loewe’s music.


The early 1900s London was reproduced in a set by UK Productions and Molly Limpets’ costumes added to the period setting. The lighting and sound complemented the overall presentation.


A large cast is needed for any presentation of this show as we follow the cockney girl’s adventure. All the ensemble work did more than suppor.  The members became the diverse characters of the metropolis. Supporting players, Max Edleston as Freddy Eynsford-Hil, Margaret Taylor as Mrs Eynsford-Hill and Jacob Taylor as Zolton Kaparthy gave strong portrayals.


The Higgins’ household, and the Professor, are governed by the Mrs Pearce. Catherine Baddeley, as the matriarch, extracted everything out the dialogue. Staying at Wimpole Street is Col. Pickering, played as the perfect gentleman by Nick Horsley. Then there is Mrs Higgins’ “Mother” played by Jennifer Hall. Jennifer has such excellent timing and always gives that extra frisson to each of the roles she plays.


“Send the bill to Buckingham Palace” shouts Alfred P. Doolittle (Ian Wilkinson) aided by his mates Harry (Eddie Tomlinson-Cliffe) and Jamie (Sean Clark-Wilkinson). With a little bit of luck the threesome got to the church on time.


Doolittle’s daughter Eliza was vividly brought to life by Charlotte Blake. The transition from flower-girl to lady was very well achieved. Her Henry Higgins was played by Robert Earl. This was his own interpretation of the character. In no way was his portrayal a copy of the actor in the original production. Robert engaged with the audience and made the part his own.


At a time when theatre groups are only looking for the latest releases, shows, such as “My Fair Lady”, are always being revived professionally. Why? In my opinion it is because they are proven theatrical successes that can still pack in an audience.