On Golden Pond

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On Golden Pond


This is the love story of Ethel and Norman Thayer, who are returning to their summer home on Golden Pond for the forty-fourth year. He is a retired professor, nearing eighty, with heart palpitations and a failing memory-but still as tart-tongued, observant and eager for life as ever. Ethel, ten years younger, and the perfect foil for Norman, delights in all the small things that have enriched and continue to enrich their long life together. They are visited by their divorced, middle-aged daughter, Chelsea, and her dentist fiancé, Bill Ray, who then go off to Europe, leaving Bill’s teenage son, Billy, behind for the summer. Billy quickly becomes the “grandchild” the elderly couple have longed for, and as Norman revels in taking his ward fishing and thrusting good books at him, he also learns some lessons about modern teenage awareness-and slang-in return. In the end, as the summer wanes, so does their brief idyll, and in the final, deeply moving moments of the play, Norman and Ethel are brought even closer together by the incidence of a mild heart attack. Time, they know, is now against them, but the years have been good and, perhaps, another summer on Golden Pond still awaits.


How will it all end up?  Don’t be disappointed – book your seats by calling the Ticketline below from Monday, 18th July 2016.

Who can remember Jane Fonda playing the part of Chelsea?  Henry Fonda played the part of the father, Norman, but who played Norman’s wife, Ethel?

“On Golden Pond” has been performed in more that 40 countries and in 30 languages.  This play was also included in Best American Plays in 1978-79.

The play had its premier off of Broadway at the Hudson Guild Theatre in 1978.  It was then performed at The New Apollo Theatre from 28th February 1979  Frances Sternhagen and Tom Aldredge starred in this production, which was directed by Craig Anderson.

The play was again performed in Broadway as a revival at the Court Theatre from 6th April 2005.  This time it starred James Earl Jones and Leslie Uggams, and was directed by Leonard Foglia.

The Writer

Ernest Thompson is an Academy Award-winning screenwriter, a playwright, director, actor, lyricist, an in-demand public speaker, and a teacher. His own work has been produced around the world and he has helped hundreds of other writers develop their stories and thousands of actors realize their dreams of improving their skills and confidence on stage and in front of the camera.

“There’s a line I like, partly because I wrote it: a writer looks as if he’s always on vacation but never is. He can live on a bucolic farm in New Hampshire or travel like a vagabond, and dress accordingly, but his mind never rests. From the moment a story comes to visit, its characters become the writer’s constant companions, demanding and demonic — and way more entertaining than their real life prototypes — but they don’t always let a guy sleep.

I’ve been afflicted all my life by storytelling; there’s no known cure. Failure doesn’t help, bad reviews only inspire a person to try harder. From the first script I wrote to the one antagonizing me now, the addiction has only grown acuter.”


The Cast 

The Cast for The Exmouth Players production are:


Norman Thayer Jr   Nick Lawrence


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Ethel Thayer      Wendy Bishop


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Charlie Martin       Mark Blaber



Chelsea Thayer Wayne  Holly Reed



Billy Ray        Cameron Dishart



Bill Ray                Darryl Nicholas



Tickets are £7 each for the Monday evening performance.  For the remaining performances during the week commencing 22nd August 2016 (including the matinee performance), the price is £8 each.

Tickets are on sale to the public via our Ticketline 07484 509514 only from Monday, 18th July 2016 between 9.30am and 7pm (daily).  We are able to accept card payments.

Our Box Office at the Blackmore Theatre will be open from Monday 15th August to Saturday 27th August 2016 daily (except Sundays) between 9.30am and 1.30pm.


Photos of some of the cast in rehearsal


What can Norman Thayer Jr possibly be telling Billy, the “grandchild” he and Ethel had all be longing for?



The happy couple – Norman and Ethel Thayer.  What have they been out collecting?



Norman Thayer and Chelsea’s fiancee, Bill Ray, possibly having a “man to man” talk?



A chance may be for Ethel Thayer to have a private chat with her adopted grandson, Billy?



Most of the cast together, but what could be going on here – is this when Chelsea and Bill depart for their holiday?



Is Chelsea giving her mother, Ethel, some tips about Billy?



Hello, what is going on here – is Ethel telling her daughter, Chelsea, some do’s and don’ts?



Here are most of the cast taking time out for a photograph – just for you!!!!



This amateur production is presented by arrangement with Josef Weinberger Ltd



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