wicktheatre > Archive > Performances > You Never Can Tell

You Never Can Tell

The Barn Theatre, Southwick Community Centre

May 13, 14, 15, 16 & 17 1969

You Never Can Tell

by Bernard Shaw

Directed by
George Baker

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“Triumph in Shaw play”
– Shoreham Herald –


David Curtis – Valentine

Juliet Robyns – Dolly

Anthony Deasey – Phil

Coral Guildford – Parlourmaid

Frances Moulton – Mrs. Clandon

Margaret Ockenden – Gloria

Brian Moulton – Mr. Crampton

Jack Bingham – Mr. M’Comas

Ralph Dawes – William

Terry Mase – Young waiter

Roy Davidson – Mr. Bohun


Production Crew

Set DesignedMike Harrington

Set ConstructionMike Harrington

Set ConstructionBarrie Bowen

Stage ManagerBarrie Bowen

Stage LightingFrank Hurrell

EffectsTerry Mase

EffectsFrank Hurrell

PropertiesFrances Thorne

PropertiesChristina Lemsal

WardrobeMorfydd Bowen

Costume Hire – Le Roy of Brighton

Front of House ManagerGeorge Porter


Programme Note: You Never Can Tell

“We extend a warm welcome to George Baker of the Southwick Players as producer of You Never Can Tell. In the pat George has produced Agatha Christie’s The Hollow and David Turner’s Semi-Detached for the Wick Theatre Company. He will soon be working on Carmen to be presented by the Southwick Operatic Society at the end of October/beginning of November.

GB wrote: “Shaw’s prefaces to his plays were sometimes longer than the plays themselves, but You Never Can Tell is an exception. He only says, in typical Shavian conceit, that this “was an attempt to comply with many requests for a play in which the much paragraphed ‘brilliancy’ of Arms and the Man should be tempered by some requirements of managers in search of fashionable comedies for West End Theatres. I had no difficulty in complying, as I have always cast my plays in the ordinary practical comedy form in use at all the theatres; and far from taking an unsympathetic view of the popular preferences for fun, fashionable dresses, a little light music, and even an exhibition of eating and drinking by people with an expensive air, attended by an if – possible – comic waiter, I was more than willing to shew that the drama can humanize these things as easily as they, in the wrong hands, can de-humanize the drama”!!
This was a play he is quoted as “having tossed off in my spare moments” but is nevertheless excellently written and entertaining and likely as long as his other plays.

Here then, is a comedy of fashionable manners in 1896 as the Wick Theatre Company’s previous comedy The School for Scandal in this season of comedies was on of the fashionable manners of 1777.”