a musical by Laurie Heatherington

adapted from Thomas Hardy's "Under The Greenwood Tree"

original music by Mike Sparks & Carole Clarke
original lyrics by Laurie Heatherington

Director - Laurie Heatherington

Assistant Director - John Savage

November 1992

Thursday 26th
Friday 27th
Saturday 28th

The action is set in the village of Mellstock in the 1860s

The action takes place through the seasons of the year:-
Scenes 1, 2 & 3 are in Winter
Scenes 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8 are in Spring
Scene 9 is in Summer
Scenes 10, 11 & 12 are in Autumn
Scene 13 is in the following May

The Dewy Family 
Reuben Dewy, a tranterJohn Savage
Ann, his wifeMargaret Johnson
Old William, his fatherSid Broadway
Dick, his oldest sonClive Long
Susan, his daughterSharon Selby
Charley, his youngestTom Savage
The Day Family 
Fancy Day, a school teacherKatie Walters
Geoffrey Day, her fatherBill Davey
The Mellstock Quire 
Robert Penny, a shoemakerAlan Jobson
Meg PennyPauline Harkness
Elias SpinksGlyn Davies
Hannah SpinksEdith Simpson
Michael MailLaurie Heatherington
Bertha MailMari I'Anson
Joseph BowmanJohn Parnwell
Alice BowmanAnn Hefford
Thomas Leaf, a simpletonNic Johnson
John Maybold, the ParsonRobert Alderman
Fred Shiner, a farmerOliver Broadway
Jane, Maybold's maidAlex King
Mrs Wills, an innkeeperRenee Heatherington
Marty, her maidChristina Rice
with:Matthew Selby
 Emily King
 Caroline Rice
 Oliver Meech
 Michael Sparks
 Carole Clarke
 Charles Harvey
 Fiona Soutar
 Jennifer Sparks
Production Team
Stage ManagementEileen Parnwell
 Ann Savage
 Alexis Meech
Set Design & ConstructionJohn Savage
 John Parnwell
 Betty Burgess
 Norman Burgess
Set Painted byRichard Michelmore
Lighting & SoundBrian Clayfield
 Chris Newton
 Elizabeth New
CostumesAnne Attlee
 Christine Fells
 Gloria Selby
Publicity & GraphicsNic Johnson
ArtworkMari I'Anson
Company ManagerBeryl Cann Hughes
 Ann Hefford
Front of HouseJenny Sparks
RefreshmentsBetty Burgess
PrompterRenee Heatherington

Programme Notes

I have long thought Thomas Hardy's "Under The Greenwood Tree" was a natural subject for a musical. His sunniest novel, it was always his favourite, perhaps because it drew on his own youthful experiences, growing up in a Dorsetshire village. Music is an essential ingredient in the story, which is in part a simple love tale; but it is also about the conflict between the village "Quire" of instrumentalists, who led the hymns in church, and the Parson who wants to replace them by an organ. (The reverse of what is happening in many churches today!)

Hardy's own family had been leading lights in just such a quire. he himself played the violin at country dances, before he left the village to make his way in the world, and was always very fond of dancing. The simple rustic characters of his book share this pleasure. But it would be a mistake to think of them as simple-minded people. Even Tommy Leaf, the village idiot, is not quite as simple as he would have folk believe; while our innocently coquettish heroine, Fancy, educated above her station, is really quite complex. It is her return to the village which sparks off both strands of the story - which is why I gave her name to this musical version.

In our production, we have tried to bring to life this everyday story of 19th century country folk, with all the natural gusto of the age. We hope, while you are here, that you too, can FANCY yourself living "Under The Greenwood Tree"...

L.N.H. November 1992

Our next production is
Next Production
We are Three Sisters
Thur 25 to Sat 27 April 2024 at 7.30pm
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