Night Must Fall

Performed: 
Thursday, 25 November 2010 - 7:30pm
Friday, 26 November 2010 - 7:30pm
Saturday, 27 November 2010 - 7:30pm
Writer: 
Emlyn Williams
Director: 
Hilary Strickett
Venue: 
Hornby Institute, Main Street, Hornby
Cast: 
Mrs BramsonVal Hall
Olivia GrayneNatasha Hamilton-Walker
Hubert LaurieSteve Pritchard
Nurse LibbyMartine Todd
Mrs TerrenceLizzie A Star
Dora ParkerLaura Christman
Inspector BelsizeDavid Wright
DanSteve Smithson

This play, written by the well-known playwright and actor, Emlyn Williams, was first produced in London in 1935, with Williams in the leading role. In 1936, it made its debut in New York with Ethel Barrymore and again Emlyn Williams. Subsequently, it was made into a film in Hollywood in 1937 starring Robert Montgomery and Rosalind Russell. During 1943 and 1944 Williams took it on tour in the English provinces and for ENSA to the British forces fighting in the Middle East, Italy, France, Belgium & Holland. A British film followed in 1964 starring Albert Finney, Susan Hampshire & Sheila Hancock, and later, in 1999, a New York production was staged with Judy Parfitt and Matthew Broderick. It has always been a great favourite with both professional & amateur actors ever since it first appeared and will, undoubtedly, continue to do so- its theme being timeless.

It is written in the genre of a psychological thriller, albeit with a considerable touch of humour. The setting is a bungalow, the home of the rich, disagreeable and controlling Mrs Bramson. Her penniless niece, Olivia Grayne lives with her, reduced to acting as her personal assistant and companion. Olivia’s would-be suitor, the affable Hubert Laurie visits from time to time, whilst the servants, the plain spoken gossipy cook, Mrs Terence & the rather simple maid, Dora Parkoe, Nurse Libby, the no nonsense district nurse and Inspector Belsize of Scotland Yard play a large part in the plot. Finally, but by no means least, is Dan, ostensibly nothing more than a cheerful village lad, ever willing to pander to Mrs Bramson’s whims, who skillfully insinuates himself into her affections with dire results.