Can it really be 30 years? Apparently, it can. It was 1986 when I saw Pauline Collins as Shirley Valentine in the West End - so long ago that I'd actually forgotten it was a one-woman show as I'd got it muddled in my mind with the film that came out a couple of years later.
To be honest, I wasn't expecting too much when I booked for the 30th anniversary revival of the play - but what a fun night it turned out to be and a terrific performance from an actress I think we were supposed to recognise from TV but, of course, we'd never heard of her. (It's touring until November.)
Coincidentally, I saw Pauline Collins a couple of weeks ago still typecast as a similarly put-upon housewife who escapes not to Greece but to the Ile de Ré in a truly dire film The Time of Their Lives ... with Joan Collins, pretty much playing herself as a faded Hollywood star with a gammy hip who escapes from a care home. You have to hand it to Dame Joan for being game enough to wipe off her makeup and take off her wig. It could have been fun, but it wasn't - because whoever wrote the clunky, clichéd script was no Willy Russell. Shirley Valentine still feels fresh and funny.