COMEDY with a serious motive - The Kili Players are raising money for Tools for Self Reli-ance, a charity that helps the people of Africa sustain their communities and beat poverty.

Absent Friends exposes the very worst human traits and flaws. Childhood friends are brought together to support Colin, who is grieving the loss of his fiance. The play allows the audience to identify with him.

Merial Shepherd stood out as the nurturing and distracted Marg, giving a gold star performance.

Mathew Ellison is also to be commended on his portrayal of Paul, who has a nasty and vindictive streak and whose marriage has gone sour.

Some of the portayals were over-exuberant, detracting from the humour Ayckbourn injects into his characters. The lighting and sound did not do justice to the performance.

This was an enjoyable show with some minor niggles which made the difference between good and great.