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Stepping Out

September 2007

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The Story

The show, written by Richard Harris, is a warm and very funny play about the lives, laughs and loves of one man and a group of women of varying ages, sizes and backgrounds attending a weekly tap dance class in a dingy North London church hall.

There's ex-professional dancer Mavis, the class teacher, who loves seeing her pupils enjoying themselves; Mrs Fraser, the dour class pianist, who prides herself on her pessimism; young, eager to please Lynne; anxious and birdlike Dorothy who has a habit of repeating the last few words of whatever is said to her ("said to her"); sharp and shrewd Maxine, an attractive bottle blonde, who is always selling stuff; Andy, an unhappy woman who always seems to be having little accidents; cheerfully overweight Sylvia, a gum-chewing, bubbly but slightly sarcastic woman; neat, proper and efficient Vera who is always tidying up and cleaning; Rose, a large West Indian lady who is always worrying about her son; and timid Geoffrey, the sort of man who doesn't like to be noticed and most of the time wouldn't be.

As the play progresses, the characters lives and secrets are gradually revealed, and the class's dancing improves to such an extent that by the climax, a grand charity show performance, they have been transformed into triumphant tappers worthy of any chorus line.

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