Where there’s a will, there’s intrigue…
Lucy Popescu recommends an absorbing female-led radio play
03 April, 2020 — By Lucy Popescu
POLLY Thomas and Anders Lundorph’s absorbing 45-minute drama The Will features the collision of three female characters each on a different mission.
Birgitte, played by leading Danish actress Charlotte Munck (Follow the Money, A War), has travelled from Copenhagen to Manchester with a devastating message for Angie (Danielle Henry).
She arrives unheralded on Angie’s doorstep and asks her to return with her to Copenhagen.
It turns out they share a father and he is on his death bed. Birgitte, brisk and self-assured, tells Angie he wants to see her.
But as Angie points out, her dad left before she was born and she didn’t know he existed until she was nearly 40.
Birgitte is quietly insistent. Munck’s acting is so good you can almost hear her mind ticking as she changes register and tries to suppress the irritation in her voice. She has the money to pay Angie’s expenses and drops in the possibility that their father, a wealthy man, may have left something for his eldest daughter in his will.
While the news is sinking in, Chris (Steph Lacey), a member of Angie’s defence team, arrives. Angie is on bail for tax evasion. She owes £10,000, and will go to prison if she can’t pay. Chris reminds Angie they need to brief her before the court hearing the following week.
Angie is penniless and unemployed after having nursed her mother through cancer. Realising her unknown dad might be able to help her financially, Angie agrees to go with Birgitte.
They give Chris the slip and, on the way, stop off in the hills their father used to roam with Angie’s mum. Gradually the women recognise that they share more than they had thought.
Thomas and Lundorph keep the plot twists coming right up until the final moments. The sisters are cleverly contrasted – Birgitte cool and assessing while Angie is impulsive and belligerent.
Our sympathy is deftly pulled between the two. It’s refreshing to hear a female-led drama.
A British-Danish co-production, The Will provides a welcome distraction from these stressful times.
• The Will is on Radio 4 on April 7, at 2.15pm.