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Thursday, 3 September 2009

Shirley Valentine - Preview

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Funny-sad Valentine

By Pawit Mahasarinand
Published on September 1, 2009

Fresh from "Nang Nak the Museum", the New Theatre Society has a date with the boisterous Shirley Valentine, the housewife who so famously broke free from drudgery.
Parnrut Kritchanchai was studying in Britain when she read the script for "Shirley Valentine" by Willy Russell, who also penned "Blood Brothers" and "Educating Rita".
She enjoyed it so much that she translated the whole book in one day, titling it "Chor Malee Ramluek", and that's the play she's directing this week.

"Shirley Valentine is a Liverpool housewife who gave up her wild life when she got married. Then her best friend wins a trip for two to Greece and she goes along, and life is never the same again.

"I've added another character - the best friend," Parnrut says.
"Part of the reason was that it's tough finding a Thai actress who could handle the solo performance, but the friend is a single woman too, so you can observe the similarities and differences between the two women."

Parnrut has also shifted the setting and social context to Thailand and stitched in some of her own experiences and those of his mother and grandmother.
Point of view

"Chor Malee Ramluek" is not, she insists, a "feminist" piece.
"We're not protesting or demanding anything. It's simply a story about how women lead their lives today, as told from women's point of view."
Parnrut, a seasoned actress known for her deadpan comedy, plays the best friend, Tuktik. Portraying Chor Malee is Sao Soong Theatre's Yaowaluck Mekkulwiroj.
"Chor Malee Ramluek" opened last Wednesday and audience reaction has exceeded Parnrut's expectations.

"The original British play was an award-winning comedy, but this adaptation somehow makes Thai viewers - even men - cry. Some people are coming back to see it a second time."

>> "Chor Malee Ramluek" continues at the Crescent Moon Space in the Pridi Banonmyong Institute between Soi Thong Lor 1 and 3, until Sunday, nightly at 7.30.

>> Tickets are Bt300 (Bt250 for students). Call (086) 787 7715.

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