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Brief Encounter

The Barn Theatre, Southwick Community Centre

October 4, 5, 6 & 7 [+mat] 2017

Brief Encounter

by Noël Coward

Adapted by Emma Rice

Directed by
Diane Robinson

Musical Director
Liz Ryder-Weldon

2017 BHAC Full Length Drama Competition
– Best Technical Achievement
– Best Publicity

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“Outstanding and utterly immersive sell out”

– NODA –


Hazel Starns – Laura

James Newton – Alec

Elena Markham – Myrtle

David Peaty – Albert

Kate McGann – Beryl

Ben Pritchard – Stanley

Adrian Kenward – Stephen

Ryan Etherington – Fred

Adrian Kenward – Bill

Matt Arnold – Johnnie

Samantha Holland – Mary

Andrea Jones – Hermione

Judith Berrill – Dolly

Derek Fraser – Usher – Ensemble – Bobby

Colleen Gale – Usher – Ensemble

Andrea Jones – Usher – Ensemble

Caron Riley – Usher – Ensemble

Jenny White – Usher – Ensemble – Margaret


Production Crew

Film MakerJay Shurey

ChoreographyColleen Gale

ChoreographyCaron Riley

ChoreographyJenny White

Production ManagerPeter Joyce

Stage ManagerGaby Bowring

Deputy Stage ManagerJulian Batstone

Technical AdviserMartin Oakley

Lighting DesignStrat Mastoris

Lighting OperationDan Dryer

Sound DesignBob Ryder

Sound OperationBrian Jones

Set DesignJudith Berrill

WardrobeMaggie Pierce

WardrobeCherry Fraser

PropertiesAnita Shipton

PropertiesDi Tidzer

Set ConstructionDavid Comber

Workshop memberDave Collis

Workshop memberCarl Gray

Workshop memberNigel Goldfinch

Workshop memberGary Walker

Scenic PaintingSue Chaplin

PublicityJudith Berrill

PublicityRosemary Bouchy

PublicityPeter Joyce

PublicityMaggi Pierce

Poster and ProgrammeJudith Berrill

Front of HouseTor Dunster

Programme Note #1: Brief Encounter

‘Brief Encounter’ is a name that many are familiar with, but they may not remember the actual 1945 film. What most people will know though, is that it is a beautiful and tender love story about a chance meeting between two people, prevented from being together by the expectations of the society in which they find themselves.

The film, released in 1945 and directed by David Lean, was based on a short play by Noël Coward called ‘Still Life,’ [1936], who also wrote the screen play for the film. In a time when homosexuality was illegal and was to remain so for another 20 years, Noel Coward, who was gay, understood very well how difficult society made it to express the most fundamental of human needs and emotions in a way that was ‘acceptable’.

Our central characters in the play experience a micro marriage, which lasts just a few weeks, during which they experience extreme joy, shame, lies, deceit, frustration, anger and loss in a very British way.

This version of ‘Brief Encounter’, is the Kneehigh Theatre Company’s version, adapted for the stage by Emma Rice and first staged in 2008. It is the same story and uses much of the same dialogue as the original play and film, but it explores love in its many forms and although the painful liaison of Alec and Laura remains at the core, the fun and joy in love that the other characters in the station café experience, helps to make the central story more poignant.

‘Brief Encounter’ uses many elements of story telling: theatre, music, song, dance, and film to tell the story pf Laura and Alec and this provides us with a perfect vehicle to create a vibrant, playful piece that also delves sometimes into the world of memories, fantasy and imagination, occasionally enabling displays of Technicolor emotion. These very brief displays hint at hat lies beneath the tightly buttoned-up exteriors.

To tell the story to you tonight in words, music, song and dance we have assembled a cast of extremely talented and versatile performers. Some of these will be familiar faces at The Barn, but several of them are Wick ‘virgins,’ including three performers who have never acted in a play before.

On the subject of love we have two actors, who have both been married to at least three other cast members in previous productions and we even have two cast members who were boyfriend and girlfriend in their teenage years – and have only met up again when cast in this production. We’ll leave you to guess who they are!

It’s been a joy working with such an amazing bunch of people, thank you for making it such a great experience.