Theatre group goes back to the seventies with The Good Life

For lovers of classic seventies sit-coms, Grantham Dramatic Society next production should be right up your street!

The cast of The Good Life, with Geraldine the goat.
The cast of The Good Life, with Geraldine the goat.

‘The Good Life’ opens at the Guildhall Arts Centre from Wednesday, November 16, based on the original 1970s sitcom.

This brand new play takes a fresh look at the self-sufficient dreams of Tom and Barbara Good and their long-suffering neighbours.

The new adaptation transforms stories and characters from the TV shows into a full play, coming fresh from a national tour. GDS is amongst the first theatre groups in the country to perform this new version, featuring cast members from around the Grantham, Melton and Sleaford areas.

In a very relevant nod to today’s cost of living and environmental crises, the story sees Tom Good wake up on his 40th birthday, dissatisfied with his mundane life designing plastic toys for cereal boxes. Fuelled by this frustration the Goods decide to give up on the rat race and start growing their own food, trying to survive without money or mod cons.

Their unorthodox new lifestyle brings them new friends as well as conflict with their old ones. Their next-door neighbours, Margo and Jerry Leadbetter, are very much conventional social climbers and are horrified by the suburban farm that pops-up over the garden fence.

Although inspired by the original TV series the story has been brought up to date in certain ways.

Director Rosemary Gibson said: “We love the way this adaptation reimagines the classic sitcom; for example, Barbara is much more a driving force of the Goods’ lifestyle change, being as excited by the idea of becoming self-sufficient as her husband, Tom.

“Although we’re very much inspired by the original characters, they’ve been developed in this version and our performers aren’t going to be imitating the original actors. This production is a great combination of nostalgia and freshness and we hope audiences will be laughing along throughout.

“The show contrasts the different lives and priorities of the neighbours as they adapt to their changing circumstances. The backstage team are loving putting together the set, props and costumes that represent the clash of cultures, as well as bringing to life Geraldine the legendary goat!”

‘The Good Life’ is adapted by Jeremy Sams, a director, writer and translator for theatre for more than 20 years. He has been nominated for numerous awards and worked in well-known theatres in the UK and America. The original sitcom was written by John Esmonde and Bob Larbey who also penned ‘Ever Decreasing Circles’ and ‘Brush Strokes’.

‘The Good Life’ runs at the Guildhall Arts Centre from November 16 to 19, with curtain up at 7.30pm nightly. Tickets are on sale now from the Guildhall Arts Centre at www.guildhallartscentre.com/whats-on , or email [email protected] . Alternatively, call 01476 406158 (the ticket line is open Mon-Fri from 10am to 2pm).

Tickets are £12 and concessions or groups (6 or more) £10.

GDS always welcomes new members and encourages people of all backgrounds who are interested in theatre and making new friends to get in touch via www.granthamdramaticsociety.co.uk or [email protected]