Actor returns to South Woodford to deliver play on life and love
PUBLISHED: 15:00 06 September 2015
An actor who has spent the past 20 years performing and directing in America and the UK, is returning to his home town to preview a new play about men, consciousness, ageing and relationships.
Old Rope delves into the uncharted male mind and examines the unspoken thoughts and insecurities that pass through them.
Inspired by his own ageing process, Howard Lester co-wrote the play with his friend Colin Simpson, juxtapositioning his two characters to look at life from opposite ends of the spectrum.
Although now living in Denver, Colorado, the actor grew up in Forest Gate and South Woodford and fell in love with drama at school.
He acted in plays while at Stratford Grammar and after attending university had “two glorious years” working as a drama teacher in Harlow – only leaving because he felt like he had to “try it himself”.
After a successful career, including directing Waiting for Godot in Kenya and Go-Go Boys in London, some might ask why he decided to preview his play at the Redbridge Drama Centre.
“Redbridge is my home town: I grew up around there, I have friends there, I have attachment with the area.
“It’s a special place for me.”
The play will also be performed in London, America and Canada.
“Men don’t talk about the issues that eat away at them,” Howard said. “Even if they confide over a pint they only tell it in a certain way – there is pressure to be masculine and just get on with it.”
Of the play, he says: “While one man is full of the joys of life, the other is contemplating suicide.
“There are lots of unexpected twists and turns and it is really a battle of ideas, through debates and conversations.”
Howard has written about masculinity in his other plays and admits it is starting to become a theme for him.
Howard said: “Old Rope shows the stuff that everyone thinks about, but doesn’t often talk about.”
Old Rope will be performed at Redbridge Drama Centre, Churchfields, South Woodford, on September 10 at 8pm. To book tickets call 020 8708 8803.
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