• Ladies sit under the hairdryers
  • Susan with her record player
  • Susan and Dennis watch the World Cup
  • Susan is forced to sign adoption papers
The Best Thing
#thebestthing

About the show

A swinging sixties story of unconditional love from the UK’s leading full mask theatre company

It’s 1966. The record player’s on, her hair’s bobbed and eye-lashes curled: for seventeen year old Susan, life is an adventure waiting to begin. But what happens next turns everything upside down, and its repercussions will last for decades to come,

Step into the wordless world of Vamos Theatre for this bitter-sweet story of mistaken morals and broken hearts, 45s and beehives, where sexual revolution proves a hard and rocky path to tread.

Funny, heart-breaking and human, The Best Thing is the latest touring production from one of the country’s must-see theatre companies.

This production is accessible to hearing and deaf audiences alike.

Sponsors: Arts Council England, Sir Barry Jackson Trust, Worcestershire County Council, Worcester Arts Partnership.
Made in association with London International Mime Festival.

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Relaxed Performances

Our 2017 tour includes relaxed performances. These are open to all, but specifically designed to welcome those who benefit, for whatever reason, from a more relaxed environment, such as people with sensory and communication disorders, a learning disability or autism spectrum condition. An easy way to think of them is the opposite of a quiet carriage on the train. They’re a great way for family and friends to experience live performances together in an adapted environment. For more specific information, please contact the hosting venue.

You can download a visual guide to The Best Thing's storyline and characters:  click here for the Visual Story Resource pdf

Production details

CAST

Aron De Casmaker: Young Bill/Old Bill/Expectant mum/Hairdressing client/Typing teacher
Hannah Kimpton: Lisa/Expectant mum/Hairdressing client/Typing student
Louise Mellor: Susan/Lisa at 10
Marco Nanetti: Boyfriend Dennis/Nurse/Waitress/Hairdresser/Lisa’s adopted mother/Typing student



 

PRODUCTION TEAM

Writer/Director: Rachael Savage
Composer/Sound Editor: Janie Armour
Set/Costume Designer: Carl Davies
Mask/Puppet Maker: Russell Dean
Associate Director: Alan Riley
Choreographer: Rachael Alexander
Lighting Designer: Chris Barham
Script Consultant: Janie Armour
Tour Technician: Laura Sprake
Projection Imagery/Print Design: alienpen
Set Builder: Gavin Lewery
Costume Supervisor/Maker: Hannah Marshall
Wig Dresser: Alison Barlow
Photography: Graeme Braidwood

OTHER INFO

RUNNING TIME
80 minutes plus interval

FUNDERS
Arts Council England, 
Worcestershire County Council
Sir Barry Jackson Trust

SUITABILITY
Over 12 years

Reviews

 

This touching piece by mask theatre company Vamos takes the long view in its investigation of the unhappy plight of unmarried teenage mothers in the 1960s. The mask work is terrific... the storytelling is always wonderfully economical, too, with the swinging – and not so swinging – aspects of the 1960s revealed through action, music and fashion…We may have heard this story before, but Vamos make it seem fresh and necessary all over again.

 

Lyn Gardner, The Guardian

 

This is yet another stunning show from Vamos. For some years I’ve been describing them as the leading mask/mime theatre company in the country. Now I find myself having to call them one of the leading theatre companies in the country – period.

 

Chris Eldon Lee, BBC Radio Shropshire

 

If you’ve never seen full-mask theatre, there could be no better introduction than Vamos – their ability to explore profound themes with the lightest of touches is magical...the irresistible mix of humour and heartbreak makes them a must-see.

 

Phillipa May, Hereford Times

 

A heartfelt and tender piece, that also acts as a gentle reminder of one of the more shameful chapters in modern British history.

 

Tim Bano, The Stage

 

This bittersweet tale of the permissive society, social stigma and a love-child lost is brilliantly brought to life by four performers and many more masks.

 

Michael Gray, The Reviews Hub

Read the Guardian article that inspired the making of The Best Thing...

Click here to read 'Forced Adoption'  by Yvonne Robert (external site)

Trailer

BSLtrailer

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Fri 10 Feb 2017 7:45PM
Malvern Theatres
Grange Road Malvern, WR14 3HB
Book Tickets:
Sat 11 Feb 2017 7:45PM
Malvern Theatres
Grange Road Malvern, WR14 3HB
Book Tickets: 01684 892277
Tue 14 Feb 2017 7:30PM
Arena Theatre
Wulfruna Street Wolverhampton , WV1 1SE
Book Tickets: 01902 321321
Wed 15 Feb 2017 7:30PM
Relaxed Performance Arena Theatre
Wulfruna Street Wolverhampton , WV1 1SE
Book Tickets: 01902 321321
Fri 17 Feb 2017 7:30PM
The Point
Leigh Road Eastleigh, SO50 9DE
Book Tickets: 02380 652333
Sat 18 Feb 2017 7:30PM
The House @ Plymouth University
Plymouth University Drake Circus Plymouth , PL4 8AA
Book Tickets: 01752 585050
Wed 22 Feb 2017 7:30PM
Stantonbury Theatre
Stantonbury Milton Keynes, MK14 6BN
Book Tickets: 01908 324466
Thu 23 Feb 2017 7:45PM
New Wolsey Theatre
Civic Dr Ipswich, IP1 2AS
Book Tickets: 01473 295900
Fri 24 Feb 2017 12:30PM
Relaxed Performance New Wolsey Theatre
Civic Dr Ipswich, IP1 2AS
Book Tickets: 01473 295900
Wed 01 Mar 2017 7:30PM
Lincoln Drill Hall
Free School Lane Lincoln, LN2 1EY
Book Tickets: 01522 873894
Thu 02 Mar 2017 7:30PM
Artrix
School Drive Bromsgrove, B60 1PQ
Book Tickets: 01527 577330
Tue 07 Mar 2017 8:00PM
Theatre Severn
Frankwell Quay Shrewsbury, SY3 8FT
Book Tickets: 01743 281281
Wed 08 Mar 2017 8:00PM
Theatre Severn
Frankwell Quay Shrewsbury, SY3 8FT
Book Tickets: 01743 281281
Thu 09 Mar 2017 7:30PM
Y Plas Machynlleth
Heol Pentrerhedyn Machynlleth, SY20 8ER
Book Tickets: 01654 702571
Sat 11 Mar 2017 7:30PM
North Hill Village Hall
North Hill , PL15 7PA
Book Tickets:
Sun 12 Mar 2017 7:30PM
Perranporth Memorial Hall
Perranporth Memorial Hall 1 Eureka Vale Perranporth, TR6 0BS
Book Tickets:
Wed 15 Mar 2017 7:30PM
Pontio
Bangor University College Road Bangor, LL57 2DG
Book Tickets: 01248 382828
Thu 16 Mar 2017 7:30PM
The Talbot Theatre
Whitchurch Leisure Centre Heath Road Whitchurch , SY13 2BY
Book Tickets: 01948 660660
Fri 17 Mar 2017 7:30PM
SpArC Theatre
Bishops Castle Bishops Castle, SY9 5AY
Book Tickets: 01588 630321
Sat 18 Mar 2017 8:00PM
Market Theatre
Market Street Ledbury, HR8 2AQ
Book Tickets: 07967 517125
Wed 22 Mar 2017 8:00PM
South Street Arts Centre
21 South Street Reading, RG1 4QU
Book Tickets: 0118 9606060
Thu 23 Mar 2017 8:00PM
South Street Arts Centre
21 South Street Reading, RG1 4QU
Book Tickets: 0118 9606060
Fri 24 Mar 2017 7:30PM
Circomedia - St Paul's Church
Portland Square Bristol, BS2 8SJ
Book Tickets: 01179 247615
Sat 25 Mar 2017 7:45PM
Lighthouse
21 Kingland Road Poole, BH15 1UG
Book Tickets: 01202 280000
Wed 29 Mar 2017 8:00PM
mac birmingham
Cannon Hill Park Birmingham, B12 9QH
Book Tickets: 01214 463232
Thu 30 Mar 2017 7:30PM
Pontardawe Arts Centre
Herbert Street Pontardawe, SA8 4ED
Book Tickets: 01792 863722
Fri 31 Mar 2017 7:30PM
Conquest Theatre
Tenbury Rd Bromyard , HR7 4LL
Book Tickets: 01885 488575
Wed 05 Apr 2017 1:00PM
Relaxed Performance Artrix
School Drive Bromsgrove, B60 1PQ
Book Tickets: 01527 577330
Thu 06 Apr 2017 7:30PM
The Bridge House Theatre
Myton Road Warwick, CV34 6PP
Book Tickets: 01926 776438
Fri 07 Apr 2017 7:30PM
The Courtyard, Herefordshire's Centre for the Arts
Edgar Street Hereford, HR4 9JR
Book Tickets: 01432 340555
Sat 08 Apr 2017 7:30PM
Prema
Bethesda Chapel South Street Uley Nr Dursley, GL11 5SS
Book Tickets: 01453 860703
Wed 12 Apr 2017 8:00PM
Salisbury Arts Centre
Bedwin Street Salisbury, SP1 3UT
Book Tickets: 01722 321744
Thu 13 Apr 2017 7:30PM
Connaught Theatre
Union Place West Worthing , BN11 1LG
Book Tickets: 01903 206206
Wed 19 Apr 2017 8:00PM
MaZ, Magdalenastraat 27, Brugge Cultuurcentrum Brugge
Stad Brugge Sint-Jakobsstraat 20 8000 Brugge,
Book Tickets: +32 (0)50 44 30 40

Tour Map

KEY: Forthcoming Shows - Forthcoming shows Past Shows- Sorry if you missed it - these shows are in the past!

 Highly articulate without a word spoken

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