THE NIGHTINGALES The Oxfordfordshire premiere of a new play by a West End and Broadway playwright is coming to the Abingdon stage.

The Nightingales by Peter Quilter focuses on a theatrical family who seem to perform more at home than they do on stage.

Breakaleg Productions director Deidre Jones said: “I chose this play because I read a preview that said it was the nearest thing to Noel Coward the reviewer had ever read.

“I sent for a copy and had to agree – I thought it was a good play for Breakaleg to do and I know the audience will enjoy it.”

The play takes us back to the 1950s and into the home of celebrated pianist Jack Nightingale. Maggie performs with him in his cabaret act and visits his home regularly for rehearsals.

But trouble looms in the form of Jack’s parents Charlie and Beatrice, retired music hall stars who are finding it difficult to adjust to life outside the spotlight.

Mr Quilter’s previous plays include End Of The Rainbow, about Judy Garland in the years leading up to her death, which was a smash in the West End last year.

He said: “The ‘50s were the final moment of sophistication in the theatre before grim reality started to dominate the stage. It is this final moment of gentle civilisation that I’ve tried to capture in The Nightingales.”

The show is at the Unicorn Theatre in Abingdon from Wednesday to Saturday, September 11-14, at 7.30pm.

Tickets cost £7 on the first two nights and £8.50 for the latter half of the run. Get them from The Bookstore on The Precinct, call 01235 821351 or by email info@BreakaLeg