Cricketing comedy Outside Edge dedicated to stalwart

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Cricket and marital strife combine in comic fashion in Bedford Drama Company’s next production.

The Richard Harris comedy Outside Edge was once a popular television series starring Brenda Blethyn and Timothy Spall.

But despite the laughs in rehearsals, recent weeks have been tinged with sadness after the sudden death of a longstanding figure on the Bedford theatre scene, Keith Pendall.

Keith, 68, was holidaying with his wife in California over Easter when he unexpectedly died. He had been cast in the leading role of Roger in Outside Edge. With agreement and support from Keith’s wife, Bedford Drama Company is dedicating the show to Keith’s memory and will be producing a commemorative programme.

In the show itself, Roger is having trouble getting a team together for the afternoon fixture against the British Railways Maintenance Division but this proves to be the least of anyone’s worries.

There are storm clouds gathering, and not just in the sky, as the team foolishly try to solve their various marital problems at the same time as winning the game.

Director Jennie Sewell said: “I chose Outside Edge because it is a true comedy which relies on realistic characters. The audience are bound to ‘recognise’ many of the roles as being like people they know in their own lives”.

In paying tribute to Keith Pendall, Jenny Curzon of the BDC Committee said: “Keith was renowned for his love of theatre in all its aspects. He was one of Bedford’s leading lights appearing in innumerable musicals, operettas, plays and pantomimes over many decades.

“ Keith’s talent was as an all-rounder who could act,dance and who had a great singing voice.

“His last performance was for me as Mr Banks in Blue Stockings in February this year. We remember Keith as a person with great energy, a wicked sense of humour and a man who will be sorely missed”

Outside Edge is at The Place Theatre, Bradgate Road from Wednesday May 25 to Saturday May 28.

Weekday performances start at 7.30pm with the Saturday performance at 3pm.

Tickets cost £9.50 and £8 for concessions.

They are available online via www.theplacebedford.org.uk by calling (01234) 354321.