Parkway Dreams by Kenneth Emson tells the story of the development of Peterborough into a ‘new town’, the people that lived there, the people that moved there and the officials that made the it happen.
Following the Devlin family and the life of Peter a baby born in the Eastend of London, where his father, Jack is struggling to find work. Peter’s parents decide to move to Peterborough, a brand new city, planned by top experts, with promises of a much better life with lots of jobs and great schools.
To begin with life seems ideal, however forty years on were the promises of this brand ‘new town’ all that they were cracked up to be?
A story about town planning seems a strange subject for a stage production, however Parkway Dreams is a tale well told. With references to some very well known T.V. shows and snippets of historical facts making for a fun way for the audience to keep up with what would otherwise just be details of what happened in stuffy council meetings. Along with some great musical numbers such as ‘It never rains in Queensgate’ and ‘People are Breeding’ which are very cleverly written the show makes for a very entertaining evening out.
With a strong cast of actor musicians playing a number of characters with many costume changes Parkway Dreams is very fast moving and a pleasure to watch. The show has almost a documentary style, interspersed with much humour whilst telling the stories of the real people that lived and worked in Peterbourgh in a way that is very believable and at times very moving.
Even if you are not familiar with Peterbourgh you will still really enjoy this show. It is possible to spot similarities in most towns in the UK as many new housing estates were constructed in the 60s changing the way families lived forever.
Parkway Dreams will be at the Sir John Mills Theatre until Saturday 18th May. To book tickets contact the Eastern Angles Box Office on 01473 211498.
WENDY COOK – Ipswich24 Magazine