Description: Shelagh Stephenson is the author of ‘A Short History of Longing’ and ‘Guests Are Like Fish’, recently heard on Radio 4. She is an Olivier Award winner for her play ‘The Memory of Water’ and has won Sony and Writer’s Guild awards for her plays ‘Darling Peidi’ and ‘Five Kinds of Silence’. She wrote Enid (the life of Enid Blyton) for BBC4 and Shirley (the Shirley Bassey story) for BBC2.
1: On the campaign trail MP Richard Fallon’s PA Genevieve set him up with a publicity ‘girlfriend’ to help him look less tragic. Though little more than a demure prop, the ruse seems to have worked. Unfortunately the girlfriend – who in reality looks like she’s from a rock band circa 1976 – is now claiming they are engaged and making demands which Richard is finding it impossible to meet.
2: Having completed his rehabilitation course, following accusations of sexism and cruelty to his employees, Tony has returned to Martha’s therapy sessions a new man – or so he thinks. He was alarmed to learn on his course that employers are not entitled to lock employees in a cupboard for misdemeanours and is still mystified as to why his casual often throw-away remarks on people’s body shape, sexual attractiveness and general intelligence are not received in the spirit in which they were intended.
3: Caroline tells her therapist Martha how she has found a new niche – a ‘cruelty aunt’ role on a local newspaper where she tells the disadvantaged to “stop bleating and get on with it”. This has met with mixed success. She has alienated so many of her colleagues that she is no longer able to return to work. And to top it all her husband has returned home and appears to in the midst – completely selfishly – of a mental breakdown. Why does everything but everything conspire to thwart her, when all she wants is to the most successful and best known celebrity in Britain?
4: Philip is back following a worrying ‘reading glasses incident’ where he was mistakenly taking his mother’s blood pressure pills and she his tranquilising medication. With a new lease on life, although still living in his mother’s house, Philip tells his therapist Martha about his recent visit to a writer’s retreat in Yorkshire.
5: Richard tells his therapist Martha about his recent date at a Korean/Swedish fusion restaurant. However this latest romantic failure and the news that his son Toby has sold one of his kidneys online might just be enough to push him over the edge…**
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Writer ….. Shelagh Stephenson
Director ….. Eoin O’Callaghan.