Cool to be a Grumpy Old Woman

IPSWICH'S Regent theatre simply hummed with bubbling female hormones last night with the exception of the handful of brave men who had ventured into the auditorium (probably by accident, or by force) to watch the show.

IPSWICH'S Regent theatre simply hummed with bubbling female hormones last night with the exception of the handful of brave men who had ventured into the auditorium (probably by accident, or by force) to watch the show.

Grumpy Old Women Live, a comedy adapted by Jenny Eclair and Judith Holder from the popular television series, was a raucous display of lady-grumps disguised by song and laughter from beginning to end.

Denise Black, Britt Ekland and Dillie Keane vented their ageing spleens in this slickly scripted 90-minute show, at moments sending the audience into hysterics, even the men.

Black, who found fame in Coronation Street, proved with a strong performance that she's more than just Ken Barlow's bit on the side. In fact she's very funny.


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Ekland continues to sparkle; the former Bond girl seemed positively youthful, even as a sixty-something dancing in a nightgown. Some of the foul language she came out with had the ladies in the audience squirming with delight.

But it was Keane, an underrated comic perhaps, with an imposing stage presence, who stole the show with her Lakeland biscuit holder: "There are times when only a biscuit will do!"

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There's no doubt this show celebrates the inevitable “tut” that heralds middle-age.

However, by the time the audience stopped laughing they'd forgotten what precisely had made them so grouchy in the first place.

For the men of a certain age in Ipswich, it was a night home-alone working the knobs on the cooker.

For the women of a certain age, it's now definitely cool to be grumpy.

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