Time Of My Life: Synopsis

Cast: 4 male / 3 female
Running time:
2 hours 20 minutes (not including interval)
Acting edition: Published by Samuel French

Time Of My Life is set in a restaurant of indeterminate origin in Yorkshire.

Laura Stratton is celebrating her 59th birthday in a restaurant with her husband Gerry, her son Glyn and his wife Stephanie and her other son Adam and his girlfriend, Maureen, who it is obvious Laura is not keen on. Glyn, meanwhile, has just come out of an affair and he and Stephanie are trying to restart their marriage. As the sons depart, Stephanie tells Adam that Maureen loves him, while Laura indicates Maureen is an alcoholic. Laura and Gerry are left arguing about family, business and life in general.

The play now slips into three interwoven time-streams, although all events occur in the same restaurant: Laura and Gerry’s story continues over the next two hours in the restaurant, largely alternating between arguments and silence. After the revelation of a very brief affair between Laura and a waiter, they reminisce over their many years together and it turns out the couple have not slept together for more than a decade, that she doesn’t love Gerry and she intends to do everything to stop Adam marrying Maureen. The night ends as they prepare to drive home despite Gerry being drunk

Glyn and Stephanie’s story moves forward through two years as we discover Gerry was killed in a car-crash leaving the party. Glyn is struggling to cope with his Dad’s business, but is more concerned about his marriage. Stephanie is pregnant and is afraid Glyn is straying again. Maureen and Adam eventually separate and Stephanie has her baby. Over dinner, Glyn announces he is leaving Stephanie for another woman, leaving Stephanie alone with the ruins of her marriage as the dessert menu is read to her. Two years on from the party, Stephanie has revitalised her life and a now single Glyn has lost all. She wants a divorce and reveals that Adam split with Maureen as Laura blamed Gerry’s death on Maureen. Adam’s life has similarly gone off the tracks and he is now a waiter, the brothers commiserate and Glyn reflects that you never recognise the moments when you are happy.

Adam and Maureen’s story travels backward over two months showing the development of their relationship and how they fell in love; it is revealed they became engaged prior to the birthday party and they first met with her believing she was on a blind date and him believing he was interviewing her for a job. Their discovery of their love is juxtaposed with the future disintegration of their relationship.

The play ends by returning to the birthday party but at the start rather than the end. The family toasts happy times. Their final one together.

Copyright: Simon Murgatroyd. Please do not reproduce without permission of the copyright holder.