DRAMATISED FOR RADIO BY JOHN PEACOCK
The narrator (MICHAEL SIBERRY) is a ‘gentle whimsical lonely old bachelor’, an author, whose ambition is to have a son. From his window table at his club, he watches the romantic progress of a young governess (SARA MARKLAND) and her boyfriend, (CHRIS PAVLO) who meet every lunch time in the park opposite. He secretly intervenes when they split-up and engineers a re-union which leads to their marriage. He follows them, unseen, to their home, and from then on, he becomes their ‘unknown friend’ helping the penniless couple, anonymously, when needed.
He follows the birth of their son, David, (THOMAS GLENISTER) from a distance, and as the boy grows up, he becomes a substitute for the son the narrator never had. He engineers a meeting with the boy through the child’s nanny, who walks the boy in Kensington Gardens.
Through their various meetings, the narrator invents the character of Peter Pan (JOE ABSOLOM) and explains to David how all children were once birds; and that the reason there are bars on nursery windows is because very little people sometimes forget that they no longer have wings, and try to fly away away.
He tells the story of one such child, Peter Pan, who escaped from being a human when he was seven days old...and flew to Kensington Gardens - where he still lives, half-child and half-fairy, never growing any older.
The narrator and David invent stories together about Peter and the fairies and Solomon Crow (PHILLIP VOSS) (who lives on an island in the middle of the Serpentine) which are dramatised within the framework of the growing relationship between the two and, eventually, the boys mother and father. Interwoven, we see David getting older.
The narrator meets David’s father and David is occasionally allowed to visit him at his home, but finally, the time comes when David is no longer interested in the stories of Peter Pan and has to go to school....to Pilkington’s. He has grown up.
The narrator writes a book about his relationship with David and sends it to David’s mother. Finally, she meets her ‘secret friend’ face to face, thanks him for all he has done for David and accepts the book.
JAMES - MICHAEL SIBERRY
PETER PAN - JOE ABSOLOM
DAVID - THOMAS GLENISTER
MARIE - SARA MARKLAND
FATHER - CHRIS PAVLO
IRENE - ROBIN WEAVER
WILLIAM - DANIEL RYAN
MRS HICKING - BECKY HINDLY
ELLEN - POLLY ADAMS
SOLOMON - CROW PHILLIP VOSS
TONY - MATTHEW THOMAS DAVIES
MAIMIE - GABRIELLA SMITH
OLIVER - THOMAS ANDERSON
PAWNBROKER - SAM DALE
BEECHER - KEITH DRINKEL
OTHER PARTS ARE PLAYED BY MEMBERS OF THE CAST
SONGS SUNG BY ‘THE MINIMS’, OAKFIELD SCHOOL CHOIR, DULWICH.
PAN PIPES PLAYED BY SIMON DESORGHER
John Peacock is an extremely accomplished writer of film, television, stage and radio and his work is very well known to BBC Radio 4 listeners.
His very first radio play 'Attard in Retirement', directed by Jane Morgan, won a Giles Cooper award. He then went on to write among many other projects, a series of 8 plays, based on Lautrec's paintings 'Posters of the Moulin Rouge' and 'Posters of Montmartre'. John’s first production with Celia, which was also her first production as a professional director, was an adaptation of George Orwell's 'A Clergyman's Daughter'.
John Peacock’s first children's serial was for Radio 5, when it was the 'young people's' waveband' ... was 'Captain Kidd and the First XV' again with Celia...and finally for Pier 'A Lesson in the Art of Snuff-taking' - his first short story monologue.
Celia de Wolff has produced radio drama both as a member of staff and as a freelance producer for the past 11 years. Her work for Radio 4 includes: The Adventures of Claudine by Colette, dramatised by John Peacock; What Maisie Knew by Henry James, dramatised by Michael Bakewell; Lucia in London and Queen Lucia by E.F.Benson, dramatised for radio by Ned Sherrin; I am David by Anne Holm dramatised for radio by John Peacock.
More recently she has directed The Man by Raymond Briggs (dramatised by the author); and a series for the Afternoon Reading broadcast earlier this year, Brighton Caricatures including stories by John Peacock, Roy Apps, and Carole Hayman.
Celia has also produced a large proportion of the Children’s audio books for Cover to Cover Cassettes including her award-winning recordings of the Harry Potter books read by Stephen Fry.