Ragged Trousered Philanthropists plays Edinburgh

Apr 3 2012 | By More

Two dates for adaptation of Tressell’s novel

By Thom Dibdin

The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists, adapted by Stephen Lowe from Robert Tressell’s weighty novel, has two dates in Edinburgh towards the end of April 2012.

With a cast of just two, Neil Gore and Rodney Matthew, the Townsend Theatre Production removes the outdated rhetoric of the original, but retains its strong sense of social justice – which is said to have helped inspire soldiers returning from WW2 to vote for Labour in 1945.

Publicity image for Ragged Trousered Philanthropists from Townsend Theatre Productions

Publicity image for Ragged Trousered Philanthropists from Townsend Theatre Productions

The production builds on Lowe’s 1978 adaptation, adding some of the book’s descriptive passages as narration and inserting more songs and a magic lantern to flesh out the storytelling element. Directed by Louise Townsend, the result is said to be a fast-paced comedy, drawing successfully on the musical hall tradition.

Set in the fictional town of Mugsborough, the play follows a year in the life of a group of painters and decorators as they renovate a three-storey town house for Mayor Sweater. Through their hardships and struggles for survival – in a complacent and stagnating Edwardian England – you understand that these workers are the real ‘philanthropists’ who throw themselves into backbreaking work for poverty wages in order to generate profit for their masters.

The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists plays two shows at North Edinburgh Arts on Saturday 21 April before going up north for a couple of dates and returning to Gilmerton Community Hall on April 24.

Scottish Listings:
Saturday April 21, 2012
North Edinburgh Arts, 15A Pennywell Court, EH4 4TZ:  2.00pm & 7.30pm.
Box Office: 0131 315 2151/Tickets £10/£5

Sunday April 22
New Pitsligo Public Hall, New Pitsligo, Fraserburgh, AB43: 7.30pm
Box Office: 01771 653229 – Tickets: £9/£7

Monday April 23
Kemnay Village Hall, 8 Aquithie Road Kemnay, AB51 5SS: 7.30pm
Box office: 01467 642177 – Tickets: £9/£7

Tuesday April 24
Gilmerton Community Centre Hall, 4 Drum Street, Edinburgh. 7.30pm.
Box Office: 0131 664 2335 – Tickets: £5/£3
Website: http://gilmerton.btck.co.uk

Townsend Theatre Productions Website: www.townsendproductions.org.uk


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  1. steve Jones says:

    I am a painter and decorator checking out decorators websites so I can get some ideas for my site, you are a surprise, best of luck…Steve