Production 31 Breath of Spring

Breath of SpringBy Peter Coke

Performed on Thu 18th to Sat 20th March 1965 at The Little Theatre
In aid of St. George's Church

 

 

The Cast

The Cast

Miss. Nanette Parry (Nan) Doris Cohen
Brig. Albert Rayne, C.B., C.M.G., M.V.O Andrew Lawson
Lily Thompson (the maid) Dawn Ladd
Alice, Lady Miller Clare Bradshaw
Dame Beatrice Appleby, D.B.E (Bee) Eleanor Bowthorpe
Miss. Elizabeth Hatfield (Hattie) Dorrie Sherwin
Pape Norman Smith
Kemp Gregory Holyoake

Cast of Breath of Spring

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Previews/Reviews

Previews/Reviews

Too Many Women Did Not Help

Cast of Breath of Spring

Breath of Spring, similar in style to television’s Rogues, contained all the simple cunning, but certainly not the immovable discipline essential for a gang of confidence thieves. A play unsuitable for the usually outstanding Guild Players, their latest production was not up to their usual standard. A little too much hysteria ruined many of the lines, although the scenes were supposed to be fast moving and the acting of most of the characters was good. A predominance of women in the cast, except for the intervention of Scotland Yard for the few minutes at the end of the play, did not help, although Andrew Lawson, as Brigadier Albert Rayne, carried off his C.B., C.M.G, M.V.O.s in a strong and pompous way. Leading the cast was Eleanor Bowthorpe as dame Beatrice Appleby, from whose flat she persuades a respectable following of friends to assist her in a number of daring robberies in aid of charity. Doris Cohen who always gives a good performance, took the role this time of a hearty elocutionist, although the more feminine parts suit her a lot better. No stage play exists without a maid and Breath of Spring was no exception. But the part – this time an ex-convict, who came in useful in the fur raids – was confidently played by David Ladd, although a few of her lines were indistinct to the back rows of the audience. The member of the gang a neurotic hypochondriac who nearly confesses to Scotland Yard was well taken by Dorrie Sherwin and the determined charmingly dishonest Lady Alice by Clare Bradshaw. Norman Smith and Gregory Holyoake took the parts of the baffled detectives. The play was directed by Tony Kilshawe, who also helped with scenery and décor. Clever scenery made the stage appear much bigger and in the centre, double drawing room doors, overlooking a hall and front door gave a realistic and non‑cardboard effect. Credits go to: Front of house, Bert Bradshaw; stage director, Philip Bowthorpe; properties, Mollie Boyce, Sylvia Ling and Raymond Osbourn; prompt, Molly Fitzgerald; make-up and wardrobe, Joyce Jewson; lighting and effects, Robin Varney; scenery and décor, Reuben Atkinson, Tony Kilshawe and W. Inskip; catering, Vera Eckersley; box office manager, Elsie Lawson; publicity, Conrad Sherwin. At a meeting of The Guild Players on Tuesday it was agreed to allocate profits from the show as follows:- Organ Fund £5, Heating Fund, £5; donation to Hall Fund, £2:10:0.

Matter of Opinion

Sir, I take it upon myself to criticise the anonymous critic who stated that too many women did not help in the Breath of Spring play given by The Guild Players. The players did very well indeed, and had the author, Peter coke, put more male characters into it, the fact that they were a gang of smugglers would have been too obvious. The Brigadier looked and acted the part; but his enunciation was anything buy clear. Because Doris Cohen has a good carrying voice, she has been in danger of being typed, and it was a real treat to see her in quite a different role. One did not realise she was capable of so much abandon and gaiety. She has all the versatility of a good actress – but your critic apparently does not see that. All the members of the cast forgot themselves – as they should – in their individual parts, but with varying success; and in fairness to them, the headline too many women did not help, is not only unkind, but ridiculous.

E.F.J Blackman

Production Team

Production Team

Director Tony Kilshawe
Front of House Bert Bradshaw
Stage Director Phillip Bowthorpe
Props Mollie Boyce, Sylvia Ling & Raymond Osbourn
Prompt Molly Fitzgerald
Make-Up & Wardrobe Joyce Jewson
Lighting & Effects Robin Varney
Scenery & Décor Reuben Atkinson, Tony Kilshawe & Will Inskip
Catering Vera Eckersley
Box Office Elsie Lawson
Stage Foliage T. Denne & Son
Courtier Stove Loan Castle Concrete
Publicity Conrad Sherwin

Cast of Breath of Spring