Colin must be comforted in his grief over the death of his fiancee so his friends, who never met the girl, arrange a tea party for him. Understandably they are on edge wondering what to say, but there is more to their unease: Diane and Paul, John and Evelyn, and Marge and her husband is perpetually out of circulation with trivial illnesses are all kept together by a mixture of business and cross marital emotional ties.
By the time Colin arrives for tea, their tenseness contrasts dramatically with his air of cheerful relaxation. He is the only happy one among them and his happiness and insensitive analyses of their troubles causes each of them to break down.
PLAYWRIGHT: Alan Ayckbourn. Sir Alan Ayckbourn CBE (born April 12, 1939) is a popular and prolific English playwright. Absent Friends was written in 1974.
Playwright: Alan Ayckbourn
Genre: Comedy Drama
Directed by: Nancy Forsdike
Production Date: October 1983
Staged: The Park Centre, Burgess Hill
BHTC Production Number: 122
Tim Kendell & Ken Guest
Jeremy Hole, Jane Cook & Richard Griffin