Written and performed by Henri Szeps,
Street Theatre until 21st April 2012
Reviewed by Bill Stephens
Written and performed by Henri Szeps , on a surprisingly basic set attributed to Graham Maclean , “I Wish I’d Said that” is a charming one-man show in which Szeps portrays a failed actor – Joe Bleakley - who has recently become a resident of the Foggadieu Retirement Village and who is preparing an entertainment for the residents.The audience watch Bleakley in his retirement village apartment as he rehearses his piece , mainly consisting of excerpts from roles in which he didn't appear during his career, or commenting on recent events, particularly some involving his daughter, interspersed with some favourite gags….all of which are delivered with consummate charm and skill.
No director is credited , so I assume Szeps directed the show himself – which may account for the difficulty I had with the piece.
Henri Szeps is a consummate actor and raconteur who quickly establishes an astonishingly direct connection with his audience. Joe Bleakley looked a lot like Henri Szeps in real life .
Therefore I had to keep reminding myself that I was really meant to be watching an actor in rehearsal , rather than Henri Szeps actor giving a performance , which my mind told me I was really watching….if you know what I mean.
In any case, it’s a lovely performance of an interesting piece, which has some important things to say about ageing and life, and you well may respond to it quite differently to me.
If you want to see it, you’ll have to be quick as the season finishes this Saturday 21st April.
Excerpt from “Dress Circle, broadcast by Artsound FM 92.7, Sunday 15th April 2012.