Mint Theatre streams free a rediscovered play by Miles Malleson

Miles Malleson, photo credit unknown

If he is remembered at all today, Miles Malleson would be best remembered for the numerous film and theatre roles in which he seemed to perpetually play dithering vicars or absent-minded petty officials in British comedy films from the 1930s to the 1960s. His charming expressions of befuddled Britishness made him a much-loved (and often working) actor.

But what is less remembered about the man that he was also a produced writer and translator of plays, particularly of those by Moliere. He also adapted for the stage works including short stories by Tolstoy and Chekhov. In the thirties and forties Malleson also contributed to many film screenplays, some of which he had small acting parts in.

After his death in 1969, his work became increasingly forgotten, especially as a writer. Until Mint Theater came across his work, over forty years later.

Mint Theater Company is a company based in New York, established in 1992, which stages rediscoveries of unjustly-forgotten works. One could could think of Mint as the American equivalent of London’s mighty Finborough Theatre in its work to revive plays worth seeing again.

Mint Theatre staged Malleson’s YOURS UNFAITHFULLY (1933) in 2016/7 to much acclaim, and followed this with staging his play CONFLICT (1925) in 2018.

CONFLICT is now available on demand until July 10 for free in the USA and UK. Please check for availability in other countries.

The recorded play lasts for 1 hour 52 minutes.

Directed by Jenn Thompson, the play follows Lady Dare Bellingdon, who craves something more. Unwilling to commit to Sir Major Ronald Clive, a Conservative standing for Parliament whose values don’t extend to his sexual relationship with Bellingdon, she ends up caught between Clive and his political opponent, the passionate and crusading Tom Smith in the work set in 1920s London. The play features two of Malleson’s favourite subjects for drama, sex and politics.

Recorded live in June 2018, with a three-camera HD setup, the production features Jessie Shelton as Lady Dare Bellingdon, Jeremy Beck as Tom Smith, and Henry Clarke as Sir Major Ronald Clive.

“We know there are many theatre lovers out there who are not in New York or are not ready to attend live performances, so we’re happy to share this wonderful production, which shares a director, set designer, and two actors with our current production of Chains by Elizabeth Baker,” says Mint Production Artistic Director Jonathan Bank. “Our national streaming audience was vitally important to us in 2020 and 2021 and we won’t abandon them now that we’re back to producing live performances.”

To watch CONFLICT and find out more, click here


Out of the Wings invites you to their monthly Meet- and-Read event

Global theatre translation pioneers Out of the Wings invite you to hear two play readings this Friday 27th May at 3.00pm BST.

In this, one of a series of their monthly meet-and-read events, they visit two plays by Colombian dramatist and radio pioneer Rafael Guizado: ‘Summer’ and ‘The Rooftop’, translated by Gigi Guizado.

The online event is free and all are welcome, you just need to sign up via the group’s email list, which you can do here

Watch the Orange Tree’s THE MISFORTUNE OF THE ENGLISH online for a limited period

From May 31st to June 3rd, the Orange Tree in Richmond, London’s acclaimed production of Pamela Carter’s THE MISFORTUNE OF THE ENGLISH is available to watch on demand online.

Guten Tag meine Herren und Frauen von Deutschland. We have travelled here from London, England. You may have heard of it.

On the morning of 17 April 1936, a group of 27 schoolboys, led by their teacher and newly arrived in Nazi Germany, set out on the first of a seven-day walking tour of the Black Forest.

By 8pm that evening, local villagers were searching for them in a blizzard.

You did say you wanted to take the scenic route.

Inspired by true events: a story of (mis)adventure and blind optimism, nationhood, and courage in the face of disaster.

Author Pamela Carter’s previous work includes the excellent THE END OF EDDY (Unicorn Theatre), LINES (Yard Theatre), and PAUL BRIGHT’S CONFESSIONS OF A JUSTIFIED SINNER  (National Theatre of Scotland). Director Oscar Toeman’s previous work at the Orange Tree has included the multi award-winning THE SUGAR SYNDROME (review here).

Watch online any time from Tuesday 31 May at 7.30pm BST until Friday 3 June 2022 at 11.59pm BST. Tickets available from £15

Find more information and book here


THE FATHER AND THE ASSASSIN Image by Simon Sorted from NT website

Here’s another NT talks event you can stream live for free.

On Friday 27th May at 1.00pm BST, you can join writer Anupama Chandrasekhar and director Indhu Rubasingham to discuss their new production, The Father and the Assassin, with broadcaster and film-maker Bidisha.

If you miss the talk, you can catch up using the same link you will receive when you register for the talk.

To register for the live-stream, click here.

NT Talks – writer David Eldridge and director Polly Findlay in conversation on 26th May

This Thursday 26th May, from 5.45 to 6.30pm livestreaming online from the National’s Dorfman Theatre, you can enjoy a discussion about the play MIDDLE, currently at the National until June 18th.

MIDDLE’s writer David Eldridge and director Polly Findlay will discuss their new production with Fiona Mountford.

If you miss the talk, you can catch up using the same link you will receive when you register for the talk.

Book your place for the online stream (available afterwards if you miss it) here