A Master of the Marionettes – photo from John Greening

Copyright resides with the original holder, probably Willoughby Gullachsen.

‘A Master of the Marionettes’ was  a 1989 ‘Play on One’ produced at Pebble Mill by Michael Wearing, with Pedr James directing.  The drama was written by Guy Hibbert, with Hilary Salmon the script editor.

L to R: Pedr James, behind Pedr is Guy Hibbert (writer), ?, Helen Smith, Rod Litherland (lighting. By the van (right) – Gareth Williams (AFM), Bobby Chapman (script supervisor). Eric Crouch (electrician) with the cloth cap at the back, Peter Wood-Fisher (Technical Manager) on the right.

The play starred Ken Cronham, John Duttine, Fiona Victory, Carol Drinkwater, David Bradley and Kenneth Colley.

The drama was about a group of salesmen, and their complicated and intertwined private lives.  The Radio Times billing read: “Teddy Rose’s passion is security – selling alarm systems to prosperous yet fearful suburban homes, one of which he and his family inhabit with conspicuous success. Then one Saturday morning a violent street encounter starts a chain of events which calls into question his every assumption and changes his life for good.”

Thanks to John Greening for making the photo available.

Lesley Weaver adds the following memories about working on the drama:

“I was the make up designer on this drama. It was shot around Oct/Nov 1988. It was the first production I worked on when I return to work after the birth of my eldest son.

I was really down about leaving my 5month old baby but there were mutiple great stab wounds ( by a chisel) for me to distract me. My assistant Helen Smith helped me keep them looking fresh on location. The exteriors were very cold so the injuries became hard & kept falling off the actors skin, then started to melt in once in the hospital scene because it was too hot! Filmed on locations around Solihull I think, in the studio at Pebblemill and the hospital scenes were shot at the Walsgrave Hospital in Coventry if I remember correctly. It had a great production crew with a nice cast, who were lovely to work with especially David Bradley & Kenneth Colley.  My 1st assistant was (Bafta award winning) Paul Gooch & the costume designer was called John Lynlard ( someone will prob correct his surname for me).”

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