1970s A man for all seasons, by Robert Bolt
1973 The prisoner of Zenda, by Anthony Hope
1980s? Webster's 200, by Giles Cole
1980 The World Walk, by Jonathan Smith
1989 Secrets of the Prison House, by Perry Pontac
c1990 Bright as a lamp, simple as a ring, by Catherine Czerkawska
1992 The incarceration of Hubert Gray, by Shaun Prendergast.
1995 Our Lady of Shadows, by Lucy Gough
2002 The Prison Father, by Caspar Walsh
2000 Priest, by D. Johnson
2003 Jesus hopped the A-train. R3.
2003 The three hostages, by John Buchan, dram. Bert Coules
2010 Walking Around the World, by Michael Butt, 45m
NOTES ON SOME OF THE PLAYS
THE PRISONER OF ZENDA....1973
An old-fashioned adventure story. Excellent listening. 80m.
THE WORLD WALK, 3.8.80
By Jonathan Smith. A play set in Spandau prison, the last refuge of the the top Nazis who escaped the death penalty at Nuremburg. For twenty years, Albert Speer tended the flowerbeds and walked his cell and the grounds; the equivalent of halfway around the world, hence the title. On his release, Hess was still there. On the instructions of Speer, 50,000 Frenchmen in 1943 alone were deported to the Ruhr valley as slave labourers; slackers were put into concentration camps; Eastern Europeans were set to work digging tunnels and fortifications on the Channel Islands...the play looks at the Nazi regime through the eyes of one of its perpetrators.
John Franklin Robbins played Albert Speer, Peter Postlethwaite was Watkins, Timothy Bateson was Hess, Christian Rodska was Anton, Brian Haynes was Doenitz, with Bill Wallis, John Bull, David Timpson, Martin Friend, Ronald Russell, Rosemary Whitfield; directed in Bristol by Shaun McLaughlin.
A hostage play - the 200 refers to the number of days Webster is locked up.......55m.
SECRETS OF THE PRISON HOUSE....1989
A very silly (and funny) tale set in a prison. All Perry Pontac's plays are worthwhile. See his page for details.
BRIGHT AS A LAMP, SIMPLE AS A RING....1990
A simple, inspiring story about the pain of being a hostage, and what ordinary people can do to help. You may shed some tears.
THE INCARCERATION OF HUBERT GRAY....1992
R4 ,27/3/92 , 90m.
Hubert Gray, a wealthy businessman, is sentenced to seven years in prison. Hoping to be released after an appeal he soon discovers that the government will keep inside at any cost.
OUR LADY OF SHADOWS....1995
Radio 3: a poetic drama based on 'The Lady of Shalott'.
By D. Johnson. The Tupuc Amaru hostages.
THE PRISON FATHER....2002
By Caspar Walsh; 24 Oct 02.
WALKING AROUND THE WORLD....2010
R4, 14 Apr 10. The Albert Speer play, by Michael Butt, was about Hitler's architect, incarcerated in Spandau prison.
Michael's interesting play gave some snapshots of Speer's life in prison but didn't really reveal what made him 'tick'.
The story was done more thoroughly in 1980 by Jonathan Smith (The World Walk) in a version twice the length. The earlier broadcast described in detail some of the monstrous crimes of the Nazis, and the retribution which had to follow. The 45m version couldn't really show the overall picture; it needed a bigger canvas.
Cast: Patrick Malahide as Speer; Jack Klaff, Mia Soteriou, Daniel Weyman, Nicolas Woodeson, Basher Savage, Patrick Brennan. Producer Judith Kampfner.
For those who missed the play - whilst in prison, Speer worked out a 'world walk' - to keep his mind and body active. He measured up the prison yard, worked out the distance he covered per day, and in his mind at least, walked almost around the world before he was released.
(ND, 18 Apr 10; bbc messageboard)
Nigel Deacon / Diversity website
Above plays known to exist in VRPCC collections
Back to top