Daisy Pulls It Off
by Denise Deegan

BBC Radio 4: The Afternoon Play

Broadcast: Saturday 2nd January 1988 @ 3:02 p.m.

"Daisy Pulls it Off" is an affectionate, keenly observed parody of life in an English boarding school for girls in a bygone era. The plucky heroine Daisy Meredith, an elementary school girl, is forced to face and overcome snobbish prejudice from her jealous schoolgirl rivals. Daisy excels as much on the hockey-pitch as in the classroom. Yet she is still bounding with enough energy to search for the missing treasure that would save the fortunes of her beloved Grangewood School, all with the help of her best chum, the irrespressible madcap Trixie Martin. O, jubilate!

The play opens in the east end of London in 1927, but quickly moves to the much more gentile surroundings of Grangewood School for Girls.

Adapted for radio by Elizabeth Lindsay from Denise Deegan's stage play, "Daisy Pulls it Off". The play was first performed at the Nuffield Theatre in Southampton in 1983, before moving to the Gielgud Theatre (then known as the Globe) in the West End from April 1983 to February 1986. It was produced by Andrew Lloyd Webber and directed by David Gilmore. It ran for 1,180 performances and then toured for two years. Alexandra Mathie starred as Daisy. The play launched the careers of Kate Buffery, Lia Williams, Gabrielle Glaister and Samantha Bond.

The production won an Olivier Award and the Drama Theatre Award (now Critics' Circle Award) for Best Comedy. Kate Buffery was nominated for an Olivier as Best Supporting Actress.

With Alexandra Mathie [Daisy Meredith, an Elementary School Pupil], Helena Little [Trixie Martin, Madcap and Poet of the Upper 4th], Charlotte West-Oram [Miss Gibson, Young, Much-Loved Headmistress of Grangewood School], Nina Edwards [Monica Smithers, School Toadie and Chief Crony of Sybil], Zelah Clarke [Sybil Burlington, Vice-Captain of the Upper 4th and Conceited, Beautiful Only Daughter of Very Wealthy Parents], Julia Hills [Clare Beaumont, Head Girl and Sports Captain of Grangewood School], Julie Berry [Miss Granville, the Firm but Fair Form Mistress of the Upper 4th / Mademoiselle, the Scatterbrain French Mistress of Grangewood School], Marcella Riordan [Alice Fitzpatrick, Prefect and Best Chum of Claire], Caroline Gruber [Belinda Mathieson, Captain of the Upper 4th and Best All-Round Sports Woman of that Form], Susie Brann [Winnie Irving, a Member of the 2nd Fob], Victoria Carling [Dora Johnston, a Schoolgirl], Elizabeth Lindsay [Diana, a Schoolgirl], Roger Heathcott [Mr. Scoblowski, the Enigmatic Russian Music Teacher], and Anthony Jackson [Sir David Beaumont, Clare's Uncle / Mr. Thompson, the Assistant Gardener].

The pianist was Jack Thompson .

Directed by Gordon House for Radio 4 and World Service.

90 minutes.


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