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If the name Ena Lamont Stewart rings a bell, it’s because she wrote one of the greatest 20th-century Scottish plays, Men Should Weep, which, with wit and compassion, detailed the lives of women living in a Glasgow tenement. This trio of plays is more in a miniature vein, but like that great classic, they have a real truth about them as they explore the lives and longings of women. There’s the ageing woman who hasn’t been kissed since she was at school, Dorothy, who is recovering from a mental breakdown, and Ella, who has taken solace in the chocolate box as her friends rise in the world, leaving her behind. These are plays that may at first sight appear small, but in a revival of truth and precision, they should deliver considerable emotional clout.
Three women on the edge of society; three chance encounters; three tales of isolation, reconciliation and hope from one of Scotland’s greatest playwrights. Towards Evening. Siblings Leonard and Edie have been estranged for many years, but – in search of companionship in their advancing years – have now decided to move in together. When the two clashing personalities encounter each other late at night, their uneasy domestic arrangement is tested and deep secrets revealed from their past… Walkies Time for a Black Poodle. Ella has moved up in the world. From a working-class background, she and her husband Bob have made it and moved to a posh suburb out of town. She should be happy, but she’s not. Desperately lonely and out of place, Ella longs to return to her old life in the city. Her only company is her upright and genteel housekeeper, Maggie… Knocking on the Wall. Former teacher Dorothy has had a nervous breakdown, and moved in with her sister, Isobel. The plumber is due to visit, but Isobel has had to leave Dorothy alone. When young Alec, the plumber’s apprentice, turns up instead, he and Dorothy strike up a very unlikely connection… From the author of Men Should Weep, one of the most iconic Scottish plays of the twentieth century, the three plays that make up Knocking on the Wall display Ena Lamont Stewart’s profound sympathy, humour and razor-sharp social observation.