FOR most people, the death of their significant other half means tears and years of mourning.
But for Evelyn, one of the main characters in The Kingfisher, it's the push she needs to look up an old flame.
After 50 years apart, Evelyn drops by for afternoon tea with Cecil, the man she was in love with as a young woman.
The play, written by William Douglas and presented by Encore Theatre, follows the couple's reacquaintance and how it affects Cecil's long-time butler, Hawkins.
"It's a gentle comedy of unrequited love," director Lesley Batten says.
"It's very endearing. It's certainly not a tragic story and it really does have some very funny moments in it."
As youngsters, Cecil and Evelyn met at a country gathering, but unfortunate
circumstances saw Evelyn marrying someone else.
"She's always felt the same way but they parted company," Batten says.
She says the play has themes with which everyone can identify.
"We can all think back on our first loves and our first meetings and what our dreams might have been," she says.
The Kingfisher cast is filled with veterans of the Melbourne community theatre scene. "We've got a very experienced trio and they're really bringing their characters to life," Batten says.
Cecil is played by Eric Heyes, Julie Arnold is taking on the role of Evelyn and Tom Travers assumes the role of Hawkins.
"We're having a lot of fun at rehearsal," Batten said.
"Each person came with a love of the character that they were going to play and they just seem to have gelled.
"It's been a joy to direct such talent and bring forth what they themselves have probably experienced in their lifetimes."
Batten encouraged locals to come along for a good time.
"I think they're in for an enjoying, fun night of entertainment with real-life
characters who are reliving some of their younger days and enjoying their life at the age that they are now."
Encore Theatre's The Kingfisher will be playing at the Clayton Community Centre Theatrette on Cooke Street in Clayton from October 12-27. Cost: $18-24. Concessions available. Details: 1300 739 099.