Just in time for Wimbledon - Kenneth More Theatre presents Broadway play Deuce

PUBLISHED: 14:10 27 June 2013 | UPDATED: 14:13 27 June 2013

Deuce at the Kenneth More Theatre.

Deuce at the Kenneth More Theatre.


To coincide with Wimbledon, an Ilford theatre is lucky enough to present the UK premiere of Terrence McNally’s Broadway play DEUCE.

Warmly funny and unexpectedly touching, the show tells the story of retired tennis stars Leona Mullen and Midge Barker, who once made up a championship doubles team.

When they meet again by chance at the US Open, the women – now nearing the end of their lives – find themselves trying to make sense of the professional partnership which brought them to the top of the sports world in their youth.

Director Steven Day said: “We wanted to do something a little different and this play hasn’t ever been performed in England, so we though it would be perfect.

“It was originally written for Angela Lansbury to encourage her to perform on Broadway again.

“I’ve only ever seen bits of the show so I was able to put my own stamp on the story which comes at the perfect time for Wimbledon fans.”

As the pair start chatting again, the conversation mirrors what is taking place on the court behind them which can be heard by the audience.

Christine Keates, who is taking on the role of Leona, said: “I play a rough diamond from Pittsburgh which is great fun.

“As soon as she meets up with Midge at a presentation ceremony, they start reliving their heyday and the class differences between them rear their head.”

The Broadway production first opened in April 2007, directed by Michael Blackmore, and only ran for a limited time.

Steven added: “I never get to watch Wimbledon because of work, so this year I’m bringing my only little bit of the competition to Ilford. It’s the perfect show for a summer evening out.”

And in true Wimbledon style, audiences will be able to indulge in champagne, Pimms and strawberries on sale throughout the interval.

DEUCE will be at the Kenneth More Theatre, Oakfield Road, Ilford on Thursday until July 6. Tickets are £10.

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