Spotlight On… Cast & Director of Tenderly the Musical

Tenderly opens at New Wimbledon Studio Theatre tomorrow and runs until 23 September 2017.

Produced by Joseph Hodges, the show stars Katie Ray and Federico Zanni, it’s directed by Tania Azevedo. Break A Leg were lucky enough to be able to interview Katie, Fed and Tania about the show and here’s what they had to say…

First up – here’s director, Tania! 

Tell me about the piece and your vision for it:

‘Tenderly’ is a musical about Rosemary Clooney’s life and the music she became known for. It’s slightly different from your usual jukebox musical because you hear about her life through her own words and you follow her journey of unpacking her life. It’s a fascinating look at America in the 50’s and 60’s and the glamorisation of ‘the girl next door’.

When I started working on ‘Tenderly’ I knew that we had to create a piece of work that made audiences care about Rosemary Clooney even if they knew nothing about her or her career. It’s been a joy to unpack this fascinating woman with actor Katie Ray and create a piece that talks about fame and the music and film industry in general.

Did you have initial ideas about casting and what you wanted actors to bring to the piece?

Casting this show was particularly hard because we needed to find an actor play Rosemary from the ages of 10 to 60 and another actor to play all other characters in her life, both male and female.

For Rosemary, we knew we needed someone who understood the sound but also had the same jovial, humours and subtle quality. Katie Ray ticked all those boxes and some!

For Doctor, we were less specific with what we wanted when we went into the audition room: the main thing was that he had to be a tremendous actor and comfortable with multi-rolling. Fed Zanni is very skilled at characterising and his playful energy was exactly what we needed for this role.

What do you hope the audience will take away from the production?

Of course I hope they walk away humming the amazing music but mostly I hope it casts some light on the life of one of America’s most beloved performers.

Have rehearsals altered your initial thoughts, at all?

If anything they heightened my interest in Rosemary’s life. We worked in a lot of detail in her time-line and how the political events of the time impacted her career and mental health. Doing this kind of research work with the cast was immensely enjoyable and inspiring.

What would you say to encourage people to buy a ticket?

Here’s a little challenge to answer that question – try not singing the song in your head to the following lyrics





If you failed the challenge, then you need to come see and the show and enjoy these performed by the most incredible actors.

Finally, any advice for budding directors?

Take as many opportunities to direct work as you can find – readings, short play nights, scratch performances.

Thanks so much, Tania and yes – I’m singing the lyrics but I still want to see the show! 


Here’s cast member, Federico Zanni….

Tell me about the piece and your character.

‘Tenderly’ is an honest, heartfelt, funny and sometimes topically controversial look at the life of 1950s icon Rosemary Clooney. It’s a two-hander and Rosemary is the only character I don’t play.

What was your initial impression of the script?

I immediately loved the honesty of the text and the instant familiarity it creates between the audience and Rosemary. Whether a fan or not, I know everyone will leave the theatre utterly in love with her.

Was it easy to translate from page to stage?

It was easy, thanks to the phenomenal team I’m working with.

Did you have any ideas about what you wanted to bring to the role?

I always knew I wanted to bring a lot of sass to the character of Doctor.

How does the space lend itself to the piece?

I think the New Wimbledon Studio is an ideal venue for it, as it’s an intimate story, with some cracking musical numbers.

What would you say to encourage people to buy a ticket?

If you buy a ticket, then you won’t be disappointed when you want a ticket and they’ve all gone! ‘Waste not want not.’

Thanks so much for your brilliant answers, Fed! 


Finally, Katie Ray, who plays Rosemary! 

Tell me about the piece and your character. 

I am playing Rosemary Clooney in a play about her life.

What was your initial impression of the script?

The script is dense and full. Rosemary’s career parallels this concept – as in, she had a huge varied career that spanned many years. My initial impression of the script was “Wow! What a life!” Second thought was how the hell am I gonna learn all these lines!

Was it easy to translate from page to stage?

I think telling someone’s life is always hard to translate correctly. The varied aspects of Rosemary’s personality, career and relationships need to be portrayed with care and thought, so for me researching in between the reading and then the staging was important.

Did you have any ideas about what you wanted to bring to the role?

Accuracy. Subtlety. Depth. Humour.

How does the space lend itself to the piece?

I think the nature of the piece is intimate. The venue gives you that up close and personal feel which I think fits the piece well.

What would you say to encourage people to buy a ticket?

Whether you adore Rosemary Clooney or have no idea who she is this show will open doors of warmth with its jazz songs and give clarity to dark times with its honest portrayal of reality. The show oozes with sophistication and unless your heart is made of stone it will move you from laughter to tears moment to moment.

Thanks so much for your time, Katie! I think you’ll make a superb Rosemary Clooney! 

Thanks again to everyone from the team who gave their time to Break A Leg for this interview – I hope to get along to see it! 


Spotlight On… Star of 9 to 5 The Musical, Amanda Coutts

9 to 5 will burst onto the scene at Upstairs at the Gatehouse Theatre, London from 30 August to 1 October 2017, book your tickets here: 9 to 5 Tickets

Read all about it here: 9 to 5

Amanda Coutts is playing the role of Judy in the show and she told Break A Leg all about the character and what her personal highlights are. 

Thanks for talking to Break A Leg, Amanda – Tell me about 9 To 5 and your character.

9 to 5 The Musical is based on the 1980 classic movie 9 to 5 which starred Lily Tomlin, Jane Fonda and Dolly Parton. It is set in the late 1970’s and is a hilarious story of friendship and revenge. It follows the same story line of three women (Violet, Judy and Doralee) taking control of their sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical, bigot boss and how the three women gave their workplace a dream makeover to have some Girl Power in a male dominant world. All the music and lyrics are by Dolly Parton who also created the original theme tune 9 to 5 for the film.

I play the role of Judy Bernly originally played by Jane Fonda in the film. Judy is a recently divorced house wife. She is forced to find work after her husband Dick left her for his 19 year old secretary. She gets a secretarial job working 9 to 5 at Consolidated. She has never worked in an office before and she is a complete, emotional wreck. Eventually she becomes good friends with Violet Newstead and Doralee Rhodes and gets more confident as the show goes on. By the end of the show she turns into a strong, independent, single women.

How familiar were you with the show?

I had never seen the musical before but I have seen the film so many times. I absolutely love Dolly Parton and loved the film. It’s such a fun show and the songs are fabulous.

Describe a typical rehearsal….

A typical rehearsal always starts with a vocal and physical warmup. Then we either have a vocal call or dance call cleaning up harmonies and choreography. Then onto Scene Work. There’s always lots of hard work involved but lots of fun and laughter too. We all get on so well.

What is your favourite musical number in the show? Have you got a favourite scene yet? Or a personal highlight?

I have 2 favourite musical numbers in the show. Dance of Death and Shine Like The Sun. I love Dance of Death because I get to dance a bit and its hilarious. Shine Like The Sun is just such a feel good number to sing as a whole company.

My favourite Scene is when the three women capture Hart. Its so much fun and finally we get our revenge.

My personal highlight has to be getting to sing Get Out and Stay Out when Judy finally realises that she doesn’t need her ex husband anymore and she is doing just fine on her own. Its also the most challenging song to sing and I love a good challenge.

What can the audience expect from the musical?

You can expect a show full of laughs with great songs and a cracking storyline. The music and choreography is amazing and we have a fabulous cast.

Why should everybody buy a ticket to come and see it?

If you love the movie you’ll love the musical. But even if you haven’t seen the film you will still really enjoy it. If you fancy a good night out then you will certainly get one watching 9 to 5.

Its a story of friendship, revenge with a little romance and is completely outrageous. The songs will have you tapping and singing along throughout the show. It’s such a feel good show with a lot of heart and will leave a huge smile on your face. 

Thanks so much, Amanda – a great interview and I’m all the more excited to see the show now!



Spotlight On… Star of 9 to 5 The Musical, Samantha Giffard

9 to 5 will burst onto the scene at Upstairs at the Gatehouse Theatre, London from 30 August to 1 October 2017, book your tickets here: 9 to 5 Tickets

Read all about it here: 9 to 5

Samantha Giffard is tackling the role of Roz and she chatted to Break A Leg about the challenges of taking on the role and why everybody should come and see the show. 

Thanks for talking to Break A Leg, tell me about your character in 9 to 5…

My character in the show is Roz Keith. She is Franklin Harts office assistant and is secretly obsessed with him! She’s uptight, plays by the rules and loves control!

From my memories of the show, Roz is quite a character – what are the challenges of playing her?

In previous productions she has always been played by older women so initially I thought that was challenging. However I’m playing Roz in her 30’s as there’s nothing in the text that states her actual age!

Any particular favourite numbers in the show?

I really love the opening number ‘9 to 5’ and ‘Get out and stay out’ is also a favourite of mine (Amanda Coutts smashes it!).

Describe a typical rehearsal…

Usually they’ve begun with a vocal and physical warm-up and then we’ve started learning the scene or musical number. This tends to be singing the music/harmonies, having a line read through and marking through choreography. This show has lots of musical numbers so we started with these early on in the rehearsal process.

How do you think the space will lend itself to the musical?

I think it will work well in a smaller space as the majority of the show is set in an office and Chris Whittaker (choreographer) has been very clever with the staging and scene changes.

If you could play a different character in the show, who would it be and why?

I would absolutely love to play Doralee just because I never get to play blondes!

What can the audience expect from the show?

Great singing, high energetic staged numbers and truthful story telling.

Finally why should everyone come and buy a ticket to see it?

Firstly because it’s a Dolly Parton show and she’s awesome and writes fab songs! Secondly because the cast are brilliant and it’s a feel-good musical!

Thanks so much, Sam – I am looking forward to watching you play Roz! 

HMS Pinafore ~ Malvern Theatres

The Gilbert & Sullivan National Opera Company stays at Malvern Theatres until Saturday 2 September, for all tour dates visit the company’s website: Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Company

Star rating: *****

Gilbert & Sullivan have long been a favourite of mine and I had yet to see a production of HMS Pinafore. My first experience of the opera coincided with my first experience of watching Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Company and I am happy to report that it was unforgettable for all of the right reasons.

The story is straight forward, essentially a love story aboard a ship – with all of the love matches inappropriate for many reasons, but they seem to fit in a quirky way. There’s Captain Corcoran (Toby Stafford-Allen) who is hoping that his daughter Josephine (Emma Walsh) will marry The Rt. Hon. Sir Joseph Porter, KCB (Richard Gauntlett) – but she is in love with Able Seaman Ralph Rackstraw (Nicholas Sales), who is low beneath her station. Mrs Cripps aka Little Buttercup (Mae Heydorn) is a bumboat who is lusting after the Captain, and he hankers after her in return. Then there’s Sir Joseph of course, who is flanked by his cousins and his sisters and his aunts and particularly adored by Cousin Hebe (Katie Grosset). Throw in an ensemble of sailors and cousins and sisters and aunts and you’ve got yourself a recipe for fun, frolics, mayhem and madcap adventures. All ably assisted by the National Gilbert & Sullivan Orchestra who are resplendent in their capturing of the famous score.

The production is a joy from start to finish and flawless to boot, the vocals of the ensemble alone are pitch perfect and their comic timing is on point. Mae Heydorn is wonderfully witty and engaging as Little Buttercup, her duet, ‘Things Are Seldom What They Seem’, with Toby Stafford-Allen as Captain Corcoran was one of the highlights of the show for me personally. Stafford-Allen was also superbly cast as the Captain, upright, uptight and unrelenting. Emma Walsh was beautifully gentile as his daughter, Josephine and her vocal ability is remarkable. Nicholas Sales makes quite the dashing sailor in the role of Ralph Rackstraw as he loses his heart to the Captain’s daughter. Katie Grosset as Cousin Hebe gave a brilliantly comedic performance and drew my attention throughout. The stand-out performance came from Richard Gauntlett as Sir Joseph, from his tone of voice to his physical comedy, he gave everything to the role and provided many, many laugh out loud moments during the course of the show. Simon Wilding’s Dick Deadeye was also revolting, imposing and pitiful in equal measure, a great character.

From ‘We Sail The Ocean Blue’ to ‘Oh joy, oh rapture unforeseen’, the story was regaled in rousing, hilarious fashion and against a glorious nautical backdrop. I can’t recommend the National Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Company highlight enough, I will be sure to catch them as many times as possible in the future. They provide the audience with the best possible rendition of the well-known duo’s work.

Spotlight On… Star of 9 to 5 The Musical, Louise Olley

9 to 5 will burst onto the scene at Upstairs at the Gatehouse Theatre, London from 30 August to 1 October 2017, book your tickets here: 9 to 5 Tickets

Read all about it here: 9 to 5

Louise Olley is playing Doralee in the show, Dolly Parton’s role – Break A Leg caught up with Louise to get the gossip… 

Thanks for talking to Break A Leg, Louise – tell me about 9 to 5 the musical and your character. 

9 to 5 is a really fun musical, it’s about three ladies who work in an office and they are treated as inferior to their male colleagues – particularly by their boss, Mr Hart. The ladies decide to get their revenge, they kidnap him and while he’s gone they change things for the better. My character is Doralee, she is a real Texan home-girl from very humble roots. Her appearance is very glam and sexy but she has got a massive heart and is in a very happy marriage, so the attention that she gets from the men is unwanted.

How familiar were you with the story?

I didn’t know the story, I hadn’t seen the show on stage or the film. I knew the character of Doralee as I’m a massive Dolly Parton fan and she was Dolly Parton’s character in the film so I knew that I would love to play her at some point. I have since done a lot of research, seen the film and watched a lot of footage from various productions of the show.

Do you think that the space will lend itself well to the production?

I think it’s going to be perfect, I’ve seen a few shows at the venue before and it’s a very intimate space which I think this piece needs really. The storyline is very intimate and the characters are very real so it will be nice to be close enough to the audience to bring them into the story with us.

Now you’re in the throes of rehearsals and you’ve got to know the story so well, is there another character that you would love to play if the chance occurred?

That’s a good questions! There’s a character called Margaret in the show and she’s a bit of a drunk, she’s a really fun character or Roz is another character I’d love to have a go at, she’s totally in love with Mr Hart while the other girls all hate him! She’s a great character and the actor who’s playing her, Samantha Giffard is really getting her teeth into that character, she’s going to steal the show!

What led you into a performing career?

I was three when I started performing and I loved it, I was about seven when I decided it was what I wanted to do for a career. I was just doing school plays and realised that was where I was happiest and confident. I fell in love with it around that kind of time and went to University before I went to drama school because I wanted to have a good theatrical knowledge and I did a very theory based course, I also wanted to make sure it was definitely what I wanted to do because it’s a very difficult industry. I decided that I definitely still wanted to do it and my passion for it increased, so I went to drama school and here I am!

Are there any particular roles that you would like to play? 

I’d love to play Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, that’s a big one for me. I also really love classical musicals, last year I did Allegro at the Southwark Playhouse so if that went any further I would love to do that again.

What would you say to encourage people to buy a ticket and come along to see 9 to 5?

You’re not going to regret it, it’s such good fun, the dancers in the show are phenomenal and they’re non-stop I don’t know how they’re doing it. We’ve got a ten-strong cast that feels like a twenty-strong cast and we’re doing massive numbers. You’ll go away with a huge smile on your face!

Thanks so much, Louise – I am so excited to see you as Doralee! 



Casualty Series 32, Episode 2 ~ Review

This week’s instalment of Casualty brought yet more edge of your seat drama, I am extremely impressed with the quality of the episodes. In fact it feel as though the one-shot led the way for the show stepping up to another gear – it just gets better. Sad to bid farewell to a much-loved character, though – here are some highlights!

Robyn Miller (AMANDA HENDERSON), Jez Andrews (LLOYD EVERITT) – (C) BBC – Photographer: Alistair Heap

Horror for Robyn ~ When a fire is started with malicious intent at Jez’s place, it’s Robyn and Charlotte who are caught up in it. Jez is not at all helpful as his mind wanders back to the baby lost in the previous fire we saw him attend. It’s up to Max to rescue his sister and niece. However, following baby Charlotte’s discharge from the ED, Jez is quick to spot that all is not well with the infant and jumps to action to remedy the situation when she stops breathing. What a day for Robyn, for Charlotte and not least, for Jez.

Comeuppance for Denise ~ The fire was an attack against Jez, with the Ellisons still at large the suspect in the frame was Denise. Following a careful ploy concocted by Jez, Iain and Mickey to catch her out, Mrs Ellison was carted off to prison. The introduction of the Ellison family which began in series 31 has not ended well for any of the characters involved, except maybe for Mickey.

Dylan’s dicing with danger ~ Some of the team are still in France and following the tragedy that played out in last week’s episode, Dylan is attempting to leave France with a stow-away! David is not on board with the idea, but leaves it to unfold when Dylan informs him that he will be taking the blame if the worst happens. How they escape the authorities and get away with their plan is a mystery!

Farewell Jez! ~ Mickey is moving abroad and he wants Jez to go with him. It’s all a bit of a last minute dash to catch up with the remaining Ellison as Jez finally decides to join him, and a will they/won’t they ensues. All’s well that ends well and the pair head off in the sunset together. The sadness being that we lose Jez, and I will miss him – Lloyd Everitt is a fine actor and I hope to see him in another role soon.

Inside Soap Awards ~ Casualty are fairing well at the Inside Soap Awards which are voted for by the public, so why not vote now? Here’s the link: Inside Sopa Awards 2017 Voting Link

Categories that Casualty are nominated in….

Best Drama Star

Amanda Mealing (Connie Beauchamp, Casualty)

George Rainsford (Ethan Hardy, Casualty)

Cathy Shipton (Lisa ‘Duffy’ Duffin, Casualty)

Derek Thompson (Charlie Fairhead, Casualty)

Best Drama Storyline

Cal’s murder (Casualty)

Charlie & Duffy’s wedding (Casualty)

Helicopter crash (Casualty


Role Contributor
Jez Andrews Lloyd Everitt
Dylan Keogh William Beck
David Hide Jason Durr
Alicia Munroe Chelsea Halfpenny
Louise Tyler Azuka Oforka
Connie Beauchamp Amanda Mealing
Iain Dean Michael Stevenson
Robyn Miller Amanda Henderson
Ethan Hardy George Rainsford
Charlie Fairhead Derek Thompson
Max Walker Jamie Davis
Lily Chao Crystal Yu
Noel Garcia Tony Marshall
Mickey Ellison Mitch Hewer
Denise Ellison Lucy Benjamin
Sanosi Jemal Tut Nyuot
Cameron Hamilton Cian Barry
Hadia Maher Laila Alj
Said Guessous Nabil Elouahabi
Emile Coudert Raphael Desprez
Fida Hamad Lara Sawalha
Officer Lambert Eric Geynes
Writer Dominique Moloney
Producer Dafydd Llewelyn
Director Steve Brett

Spotlight On… Choreographer of 9 to 5 The Musical, Chris Whittaker

9 to 5 will burst onto the scene at Upstairs at the Gatehouse Theatre, London from 30 August to 1 October 2017, book your tickets here: 9 to 5 Tickets

Read all about it here: 9 to 5

Chris Whittaker has choreographed the show and here he tells Break A Leg all about the process. 

How familiar are you with 9 to 5 The Musical and what will be your unique ‘stamp’ on the choreography for this incarnation?

It wasn’t a show I knew huge amounts about before I came on board with this production. I knew the obvious musical numbers (9-5 and Get Out and Stay Out) and I knew it was a big dance show, or at least has the potential to be. Having not seen any other versions of the show I have no previous choreography to try and emulate or compare my work to so I have free reign to do whatever I want with the choreography of the show.

Does the space influence your choices when you’re choreographing a show? 
Massively, from the set design to the layout of the seats it all has an impact on how I use the space and how I can achieve my vision of the show. For this version of the production we are staging it in the thrust (3 sided auditorium) which means I have to be constantly thinking of the view from all sides of the auditorium and check that no one side has been more favoured or neglected than another. It’s a challenge I really enjoy and makes the show even more interesting to work on.
Who are your personal inspirations?
In terms of my early career a big inspiration was Adrian Edmeades who was the choreographer I assisted for many years and who gave me so many wonderful opportunities.  As for the work of other choreographers, I have always loved the work of Matthew Bourne and his ability to tell a story through stunning pieces of dance and my biggest musical theatre inspiration is Peter Darling, his work is visually stunning and so intelligently put together. The “school song” from Matilda is one of the most incredible pieces of musical theatre staging I have ever seen, it’s such a wonderful combination of choreography, set design and direction that you can’t picture where one department finishes and the other starts.
Have you a favourite piece in your previous credits? 
Working on last Christmas’ production of Anything Goes was a true highlight, having brand new dance music written for the show and being able to create my own version of them was brilliant. Creating a new 4 minute dance break for the title song with amazing tappers made me so proud each time I watched them perform it.
What led you into a career as a choreographer? 
Like most choreographers I started out as a performer, became a dance captain and was lucky enough to have a choreographer who took me on to be his assistant on some amazing work, I was then offered a production to choreograph myself. This lead to another director asking me to work with them and I’ve been fortunate enough to keep working as a choreo ever since, I’m truly grateful for the amazing productions I’ve had the chance to work on in my short career so far and look forward to adding 9 to 5 to them.
Any advice for budding choreographers? 
Enjoy performing first. Don’t rush getting into choreography just because it’s somewhere you want to end up, the best choreographers are ones that have learnt and absorbed from the best around them. Be in the rehearsal rooms, see how mistakes are made and solved, learn how productions and ideas are put together and built through collaborations of directors, designers, MD’s and casts.

Finally why should everyone come and see 9 to 5 The Musical?

It’s a brilliantly uplifting and fun show with phenomenal cast performing some amazing songs. I can’t wait to get started on this production and think the team we’ve got together are all wonderful.
Thanks so much for the insight, Chris, I can’t wait to see what you’ve done with this fantastic show! I am expecting great things from the looks of rehearsals! 


The Tiger Who Came To Tea ~ Malvern Theatres

The Tiger Who Came To Tea is currently on UK tour, all dates and booking links can be found here: The Tiger Who Came To Tea UK Tour

Star rating: *****

The Tiger Who Came To Tea is a renowned children’s story by Judith Kerr, this musical play version has been adapted and directed by David Wood. I was fascinated to see how this would translate onto the stage and I had an excited three year old in tow who couldn’t wait to see the tiger.

The cast engage the audience from the beginning and the action was visual too which set the scene and told the story without words. All three performers; Abbey Norman who played Sophie, Ashley Tucker who played Mummy and Harry Howle who had the unenviable task of playing the roles of Daddy, Milkman, Postman AND the Tiger should all be commended on maintaining a style which children related to immediately. Clear, concise diction (although not so much from the Tiger… he was too busy eating and drinking everything in the house!) and smiling faces, full of character – the cast also perform well as a tight unit which is necessary for a production of this description. Plenty of laughs and slapstick humour in there too.

The set lent itself to every quirk of the story, allowing for food and drink to disappear when the large wild feline guest with striped markings appeared, to join Mummy and Sophie. The props were all large and obvious enough for young watchers to see and recognise them from anywhere in the auditorium. The lighting also provided a simple yet effective backdrop and one light of a star curtain prompted my son to declare that it was night time now.

It’s such an elaborate tale and here it is portrayed in equally elaborate fashion, from the tiger’s costume to the detailed set.

If you’re thinking of taking young children to see it, I have no hesitation in recommending it for 2 years + as there were several children younger than my child in the audience who were captivated and caused little disruption. A wonderful afternoon at the theatre shared with my little boy and our friends.



Trust Me, Series One, Episode Three ~ Review

Another episode of Trust Me has been and gone, so it’s over to resident Guest Blogger, Chloe Buckles to fill us in on the latest instalment!

The penultimate episode of this series didn’t disappoint! But if you’re of a nervous disposition you may want to look away now because this episode gave us emotional heartbreak, plenty of blood and yet more unanswered questions!

Having done his research now into ‘Dr Ally’/Cath Hardacre (Jodie Whittaker), Andy Brenner (Emun Elliot) is quick to realise that his new girlfriend is not all she seems to be. After a frosty shift together, which gets everyone suspicious given that Cath has just lost her father, Andy invites Cath to a secluded and somewhat bleak part of the Scottish countryside where he finally calls her out on her identity deception. The biggest surprise here was that although he is obviously angry at what Cath has been doing – pretending to be her doctor-pal Ally – he appears on the surface to be supporting her. But all isn’t quite sitting right with this partnership now, and Andy persuades Cath to move in with him. I wouldn’t be surprised if there is far more to his story still to come, even with just one more episode to go. With his help, Cath seems to be becoming an even more convincing of a doctor as he helps her get up to speed on some of the more complex procedures. Is he just setting Cath up so he can be the one to take the fall out and the glory for having uncovered it himself? Or is he genuinely in love with her and only wants to see her succeed?

Ally (JODIE WHITTAKER), Dr Andy Brenner (EMUN ELLIOTT) – (C) Red Productions – Photographer: Mark Mainz

Back in Sheffield, Karl (Blake Harrison) smells a rat. He’s told that Cath has been spreading lies about their relationship and telling people that he had been violent and we learn from him that Cath is not known for being deceptive and lying. This information into her character added to the enormity of what she is currently doing and coupled with her encounter with Andy earlier we realise how the main driving force in her motivation is to ensure that daughter Molly has the best life, and the best potential life, she can. But Karl is heading to Edinburgh to confront Cath – will he be the one to out her identity to the rest of her colleagues?

Later in the episode we see things really begin to spiral into difficulty for Cath. A very busy shift on A&E with her line manager Brigitte (Sharon Small) means everyone is against it and Brigitte is putting pressure on Cath to get through their patients as quickly as possible. With emergencies en route and patients stacking up all around them, Cath begrudgingly succumbs to Brigitte’s pressure of letting her patient with the dental abscess go home instead of being checked out further.

This was only ever going to lead to one moment, and from the moment Mr Abscess walked in it was clear it wasn’t going to end well for him. Sure enough, he is readmitted later on with an obstructed airway and he’s in a bad way. With Brigitte panicking because she knows she encouraged his discharge and unable to get an airway in Cath is forced to step up. At this point we really see Brigitte struggle and you get a real picture of how much she is out of her depth in her role – she certainly came across to the viewer as very vulnerable. Forced to perform a surgical airway under pressure Cath eventually succeeds. Needless to say, if you were of a nervous disposition these weren’t the scenes for you. Tense and dramatic I’m not sure if I breathed throughout (in fact I was probably in need of some oxygen myself).

The episode finished with Brigitte pleading with Cath to alter the records to save them from any backlash from having earlier discharged the patient. Clearly struggling with the idea of lying about the care of a patient (somewhat ironically given that she’s pretending to be a doctor) Cath eventually alters the notes. But then she discovers Brgitte is drinking. Will she put the blame on Brigitte? Or continue to stick to their cover story? And more importantly, who is going to blow her own massive secret?

Looking forward to hearing about the final episode from Chloe! Here’s her own blog where you should drop in and check out her ‘ramblings’…

Inept Ramblings Blog

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