Time of life for old friend

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Weekly Life -

San­der said. “We came from Cape Town, South Africa (when she was six) and lived in Pep­per­mint Grove.

“Very stupidly, my fa­ther came out, bought a house there and promptly didn’t work for five years while my mother put him through law school.

“She was a trained nurse and took in board­ers – can you imag­ine tak­ing in board­ers on The Es­planade in Pep­per­mint Grove?

“We cer­tainly couldn’t af­ford that house – 15 rooms it was. It was lovely and old but it’s no longer there.”

Now a Leed­erville res­i­dent, the thes­pian’s rec­ol­lec­tions of postWWII WA dif­fer greatly to those of her latest on-stage char­ac­ter.

Liv­ing in a small Wheat­belt town, Lizzie – one of two pro­tag­o­nists in Agelink Theatre pro­duc­tion The Time of Your Life – re­calls the tri­als of the era with towns­folk caught up in the hys­te­ria of the po­lio epi­demic and threat of com­mu­nist spies.

“The play is based on the sto­ries of 30 WA se­niors, who shared their rem­i­nis­cences in work­shops at Ci­ti­place Com­mu­nity cen­tre over two years,” San­der said.

“Be­cause these ac­tors are very ac­tive and en­gaged, di­rec­tor Jenny Davis de­cided to make them part of a cre­ative process.

“The show is a slice of history and will be par­tic­u­larly in­ter­est­ing for young peo­ple who might not know much about the war or the era.

“For the older peo­ple that Jenny worked with, I think the show will make them feel like they have been val­i­dated.”

The lo­cal stage star, who made her de­but at 11, per­forms rarely these days, how­ever, re­cently en­joyed a small role in home­grown chil­dren’s film, Pa­per Planes.

“My hus­band (ac­tor Mau­rie Og­den) and I worked for 30 years, pretty well non-stop, in ev­ery theatre in Perth and we’ve done mu­si­cals to Shake­speare – the full catas­tro­phe,” San­der said.

“I can still learn lines, but stressed about whether I would have a full re­call on the night, so started work­ing in re­tail cloth­ing.

“I still have a part-time job at Blue Il­lu­sion at Clare­mont Quar­ter.

“I’m do­ing this show for Jenny who is an old friend.”

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