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GRAND THEATRE. PRODUCTION OF "AFTERGLOW" BY THE! L.A.D.S. On Friday, September 11th, 1903, Mr and Mrs Kendal gave the first representa- tion of Mr F'raser Wood's comedy, "After- glow," at the Grand Theatre, and from our recollection of it at this distant date, we were of opinion that the L.A.D.S. in selecting this charming play, in aid. of the funds of the Llandudno Sanatorium, were testing their histronic capabilities to their utmost. It was unfortunate that a sud- den March gale should have marred this production, which was undoubtedly the best staged piece our premier amateur dramatic company have put on. The ladies at, times were quite inaudible, through the storm. It did not, however, mar the dramatic scene in Act II., which was particularly well enacted throughout, and drew forth at its termination a genuine outburst of applause which re- sulted in the whole of the company ap- pearing before the .curtain. DRAMATIS PERSONA. Sir Philip Mundyn, Bart, Mr A. Clevere Slater; Joseph Bloomer, Esq., J.P., C.C., Mr Arthur Dunphy; Lopez Romero, Mr C. A. Hutton; Harry Detnesford, Mr Geo. Chase, junr. Ny Blake, Mr F. Walter Williams; Foot- man, A. N. Other; Mrs Bloomer, Mrs C. A. Hutton; Caroline Bloomer, Mrs Arthur Dunphy; Em'ly, Miss Mabel Margetts; Mary Detnesford, Miss Blanche Leavitt. Act 1. "After long years." Scene Drawing room at B'loomylawn—Mr Bloomer's up-river house at Tedclington, 7 p.m. Act 2, "After Dinner." Scene: The Smoke Room at Bioomylawn. 9 p.m. Act 3, "After All." Scene: The Cot- tape, Elms dale Road. Next morning'. Time: Present Day. THE PLAY—ITS STORY. The story of "Afterglow" is based upon the theme that first love, however apparently it may be buried, never really dies; that it ijs the one love that is i111- mortal, and that it asserts with irre- sistable force when re-awakened. The key-note of the play is struck im- mediately upon the rising; of the curtain in the first Act, when we, find Caroline Bloomer (although bethrothed, through the schemeing of her parents, to Sir Philip Mundyn) loved by and loving young Harry Detnesford, the son of the widowed Mary Detnesford, who was, in. her younger days, loved by the man now engaged to Caroline. Harry, with the impulsiveness of youth, begs Caroline to elope with him; but she, inheriting much of the worldly wisdom of her parents, re- fuses to accede to his request unless he can secure sufficient, wealth to provide her with at least some of the luxuries to which she, the daughter of wealthy parents, has been accustomed. This supplies the motive for Harry's a.ction in the second act when, urged by his anxiety to snatch Caroline from a union with Sir Philip, and suddenly tempted by the opportunity of acquiring £ 5000 which is presented, he steals that sum from the pocket of Lopez Romero (3j Spanish adventurer who is en- deavouring, by means of stolen papers, to dispose of certain valuable Mexican iiiin-I ing concessions which belonged to Mrs Detnesford's husband) while the latter is sleeping off the effects of a self-injected dose of morphia. As Harry takes the bank-notes from Romero's pocket, Sir Philip silently enters the ronrn. He affects to treat the theft as a practical joke, and, after scme difficulty, induces Harry to hand him the notes, which he. takes with a view to restoring them to Romero but, as Sir Philip is about to replace the money in Romero's pocket, the latter awakes—discovers his loss—and accuses either Sir Philip or Harry of having robbed him. To escape the -circumstantial evidence of having the notes found upon him, Harry burns them; and this action having made their restora- tion impossible, Romero threatens prose- cution. It ijs at this point .that Sir Philip's old love for Mary Detnesford is aroused. See- ing his old sweetheart's happiness im- minently in danger of ruin by the dis- covery and disgrace of her sen, Sir Philip takes the theft upon himself, and the cur- tain falls upon the second act upon this strongly dramatic situations, and upon Mary Detnesford's heart-broken cry of "Phillip, Philip," as the conviction is forced upon her that the man whom she once loved is a thief. In the, third act we see the correspon- ding re-awakening of old affection in the breast of Mary, for no sooner does she see her erst-while lover in danger of im- prisonment than she is irresista-bly com- pelled to try to save him. She therefore bargains with Romero that, if the £5000 be restored to him, he will abandon the prosecution of the supposed thief, and, having obtained this promise reluctantly, she herself pays him the amount, although by so doling, she reduces herself to poverty. In the meantime, the contrast between the strength of a first love and that of a later growth is shown by the fact that Caroline Bloomer, immediately on suspicion falling u ponSrir Philip, breaks off her engagement with him; while it is only when he is threatened with trouble and disgrace that Mary's old love leaps to the surface. The unmasking of the viE any of Romero; the acquisition of the mining ,concessilons by Mary; the sub- stitution of new notes by the Bank of England for those burnt; and Lhe final dscovery by Mary Detnesford that she and her son have been for years subsisting on the. secret bounty of Sir Philip—(who, at the cost of the greater part of his fortune, provided for them when, soon after her marriage to Gerald Detne,sford, she was deserted and left penniless by her hus- band)—lead to the inevitable- re-union of the long-separated hero and heroine and to the prospect of the equally happy future of Harry Detnesford and Caroline Bloomer—first love, in both cases—too strong to be resisted by adverse circum- stances, and finally triumphing over all obstacles. The central i.dea which pervades this comedy is a love story, full of interest from first to last, showing some delightful natural acting, and with a wealth of witty dialogue full of originality. THE PLAYERS. Mr A Cievere Slat,er and Miss B. Leavitt in their respective roles of hero and heroine had the most trying parts to mairtain, and whilst we consider Mr Slater excelled himself, Miss Leavitt was, as we have pre-viiously noted, at times quite inaudible, but when heard more distinctly, especially towards the final scene, she was pleasing, entertaining and most touching' in a trying and pathetic role. Mr Arthur Dunphy, who at the outset 4 came irn for a flattering reception, after a lengthy absence from the L.A.D.S. pro- ductions, was very original in his con- ception of Mr Joseph Bloomer. To him we 'naturally looked for the homour of the comedy, and we got it. The author has given us some brilliant specimens of his wit in "Afterglow," and Mr Dunphy made the most of it, improving at times upon the original lines and introducing some local touches that delighted the audience and drew forth the heartiest, laughter from all parts of the- house-. Lopez Romero was, it goes without say- ing, safe in the hands of Mr C. A. Hutton. There was no mistaking his Spanish nationality, his broken English and clever acting in the dramatic passages was generally approved and thoroughly ap- preciated. Harry Detnesford, the misguided youth of the play, was one of Mr Geo. Chase, junr.'s cleverest productions. He was the part throughout, and despite the uniove- ableness of his character, the whole house. had a sneaking regard for him, and hoped his affection for Caroline would be return- ed, and his one apparent crooked path made straight. Mrs Arthur Dunphy gave us a clever conception of the very trying part of Miss Bloomer. Love scenes for amateurs, or professionals for that matter, are always the most, diifficu.lt to carry through naturally. It was most unfortunate that most of her lines were lost to the audience owing to the adverse climatic- conditions. Mrs C. A. Hutton's Mrs Bloomer was undeniably clever, a by no means easy part; she was highly successful in her pour tray al, and her every line heard with distinction, thanks to a special effort on her part to rise to the occasion. A minor but nevertheless important part, was Mr F. Walter Williams's Ny Blake here perhaps we had too much of the local personality and not sufficient, of the Colonial chum, hailing from Mexico. Miss Mabel Margett-s was given the small role of Eim'ly, a, maid, and was as usual a huge favourite with the audience. Mr A. N. Other, the stately footman, both look- ed and acted hie part, as to the manner born. The acting throughout was of a high order, the staging a huge success, and re- flecting the highest praise- on a.ll con- cerned. The electric lamps-in Acts 1. and II. were provided by Mr Willoughby Lance, the furniture by Messrs J. Dicken and Sons, and the fire places by Messrs. Howel Jones and Co. Mr and Mrs Claxton Jones and Herr Schmitt provided the incidental and enir'ac-t music, and were generously ap- plauded for the various items. Dr. Woodhouse, who appeared before the footlights to thank the L.A.D.S. on behalf of the Committee of the Sana- torium, voiced a, complaint frequently heard, that the L.A.D.S. had not given this winter so many productions as formerly. Mr Hutton, in replying, stated one rea- son why they had not given so many per- formances this year was that they were desirous of giving the other amateur com- panies a chance. The L.A.D.S. was not dead, and he did not, think it was at all likely it would die before they had reached the goal of their ambition, the raising of El,oo,C) towards local charities. (Cheers.)