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  • Writer's pictureAmrat

Review: It's Her Turn Now, playing at The Mill at Sonning

Updated: Oct 19, 2023

OUT OF ORDER is Ray Cooney’s classic farce about MPs behaving badly. Here it has been turned on its head and adapted so that it is female MPs behaving badly.

When Rebecca Willey MP, a government Junior Minister, plans to spend the evening with John Worthington, special advisor to the opposition, they check into a hotel for their naughty affair. Except things start to go disastrously wrong!

I naturally looked forward to watching the play after reading that introduction. I recently visited The Mill at Sonning where all theatre tickets include a Two-Course Meal in their Restaurant before the show (unless otherwise specified). This was a pleasant experience, the restaurant and theatre are both nice and comfortable, and the outdoor seating overlooking the banks of the Thames was stunning. A food and theatre experience like this is quite rare, and I should add the food was delicious. The spinning water mill is a standout element of the bar that adds to its cosy atmosphere.

Image showing a misty bank of the river Thames with trees, which the water is reflecting.
View of the back of The Mill at Sonning | Photo by Amrat Khorana

It's Her Turn Now is a gender-swapped adaptation of Ray Cooney's classic farce OUT OF ORDER. It's always refreshing to see role reversals in plays, and Elizabeth Elvin expertly portrays Rebecca Willey MP as naturally deceitful and without regret. In the play, the Houses of Parliament are viewed through the hotel window, which provides a backdrop to the action. In this updated, modern version of the play, Rebecca Willey MP uses the hotel room's landline to make and receive calls, and one of the most important calls she makes is to her Private Secretary, Georgia Pidgeon (Felicity Duncan), who she asks for assistance after discovering a body in the sash window. The window plays an important role in the play and gets as much stage time as some of the other cast members.

Image showing two cast members of It's Her Turn Now. Female character is holding a landline phone and male character is blurred in the background looking confused.
It's Her Turn Now Raphael Bar and Elizabeth Elvin | Photo by Andreas Lambis

Rebecca Willey MP comfortably fabricates one lie after another while trying to remove the body from underneath the sash window to avoid drawing attention to her affair with John Worthington (Raphael Bar). Private Secretary Georgia Pidgeon is tasked with maintaining these lies, and in many situations, she is forced to devise creative solutions and make excuses under pressure in order to keep up with them. In my opinion, Felicity Duncan stands out for her portrayal of a very chaotic character who simply wants to get home to her dad, who is being cared for by Nurse Foster (Jules Brown). In spite of her confusion, Georgie Pidgeon is forced to take initiative in a situation where she has no idea what's going on, including the affair, the dead body, and coordinating hotel staff coming in and out.

Image showing the cast of It's Her Turn Now, in a hotel room.
It's Her Turn Now | Photo by Andreas Lambis

As the 'dead' body, Charlie Parker-Swift plays a very silent but crucial role that is at the centre of all the scandal and confusion. It is not long after the play begins that one forgets it is a set due to its skilful design.

Visiting the Mill at Sonning is very much an experience, and the comfortable theatre seats really make all the difference in one's enjoyment of the play.

Cast: Raphael Bar’s theatre credits include ‘The Winslow Boy’ (National Tour), ‘Loot’ (Park Theatre and Watermill), ‘Out of Order’ (National Tour).

Jules Brown’s theatre credits include: ‘The Shawshank Redemption’ (UK Tour), ‘Treasure Island’ (Haymarket theatre), ‘Ghost the Musical’ (International/UK Tour), ‘Out of Order’ (UK Tour). Eric Carte’s theatre credits at The Mill at Sonning include ‘My Fair Lady’, ‘Funny Money’ and ‘Spider’s Web’. Felicity Duncan’s theatre credits include ‘Fiddler On The Roof’ (London Palladium and National Tour): Rosie in ‘Mamma, Mia!’ International Tour and ‘Two Into One’ at The Mill at Sonning. Elizabeth Elvin has performed in many productions at The Mill at Sonning, including ‘Still Life’, ‘High Society’, ‘Born Yesterday’, ‘Stepping Out’, ‘A Party To Murder’ and ‘Not Now Darling’.

Harry Gostelow was recently seen on film in ‘Holmes and Watson’, and on Netflix in ‘The Crown’ and ‘Rebecca’. James Holmes’ theatre credits include ‘The Boys in the Band’ (Park Theatre & Vaudeville Theatre, West End), ‘Out of Order’ (National Tour). Michelle Morris was Elvira in ‘Blithe Spirit’, Jane in ‘Steaming’, Christine in ‘‘Trespass’, McKenzie in ‘A Party to Murder’, Paula in ‘Portrait of Murder’ and Belinda in ‘Season’s Greetings’ (all National Tours). Charlie Parker’s theatre credits include ‘Funny Money’ at The Mill at Sonning, ‘Cherry Picnic’ at The Old Red Lion, ‘Peter Pan: The Boy Who Hated Mothers’ at The Blank Theatre (LA), Creative team: Director David Warwick Designer Alex Marker Costume Designer Natalie Titchener Lighting Designer Graham Weymouth


The Mill at Sonning Theatre Ltd

Sonning Eye

RG4 6TY Reading

Dates: 28 September - 18 November 2023



Restaurant open and serving lunch from 12.15pm – 2pm

Performance starts 2.15pm


Restaurant open and serving dinner from 6.15pm – 8pm

Performance starts 8.15pm

Prices: Tickets from £56

Running time: approximately 120 minutes including interval



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