OSCAR WILDE'S The Importance of Being Earnest meets Noël Coward's This Happy Breed in a new play at the Dorset Theatre Festival. Thom Thomas wrote Without Apologies as a whimsical suggestion of what may have happened to the main characters of Earnest some two-score years later.
And so, surprisingly, Algy is married to Gwen and Earnest has wed Cecily – not what we were led to expect as the curtain went down in 1899.
Furthermore, Algy and Gwen are making do in a smallish house in a not entirely fashionable part of London with octogenarian Lady Bracknell tucked into an upstairs room except for her weekly pilgrimage downstairs to listen to the wireless. And they let rooms to a lodger, a musician.
Into this set-up come Earnest and Cecily and their blowsy, 30-year-old daughter, Brenda, desperate for lodgings.