Book · Summer · West Side Story


Me: So how did it go?

Nell: Can’t you let me rest first?

Me: No, I have to know.

Nell: Well, David got the part of Bernardo. He did an excellent audition.

Me: And Harriet?

Nell: There was stiff competition for Maria. A young spaniel called Marjorie performed particularly well and we thought she had it in the bag.

Me: Oh dear. Harriet is so shy. She must have been nervous.

Nell: She was. When she went on stage David started cheering.

Me: Bless him.

Nell: Rita was in the wings urging her on and I gave her an encouraging wave, but she faltered.

Me: Oh no.

Nell: And that’s when Jim stepped in.

Me: What do you mean?

Nell: He strode on to the stage, took her paws in his and they sang “Tonight” together.

Me: Jim sang?

Nell: Oh yes, he’s been practising with her.

Me: I didn’t know.

Nell: Well, it brought the house down. Even Ron Gilbert applauded and he is a hard nut to crack.

Me: Who is Ron Gilbert?

Nell: The stage manager. A bad tempered Great Dane from Torquay.

Me: So Harriet is playing Maria?

Nell: Yes, and Jim has been cast as the male lead, Tony.

Me: How romantic. Our very own Romeo and Juliet. Who’s directing?

Nell: Rupert is directing again.

Me: Do I know him?

Nell: He’s a rather flamboyant red setter and an old flame of mine from my time at the RSC.

Me: I didn’t know you were part of the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Nell: My Lady Macbeth was legendary. Honestly, I do worry about you sometimes. You live in a world of your own.

Me: Yes, sorry.

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