Enter a Free Man

March 1981

by Tom Stoppard, directed by Philip Jones


George Riley - Anthony Morris

Persephone - Gillian Yates

Linda - Karen Barrett

Harry - Dick Dann

Florence - Lynn Trout

Carmen - David Gill

Able - David Stevens

Brown - Gordon Halliday

Production Team:

Director - Philip Jones

Stage Design - James Pettit & Roy Wheeler

Stage Properties - Carol Pettit, Diana Lucas & Pat Rutter

Costumes - Sheila Kendall-Edgecombe

Prompt - Mary Jones

Lighting - Kevin Gardner

Sound - Fenella Gill

Make-up - Anne Bacon

Front of House - Margaret Butt & Alison Lambourne

Publicity - Diana Lucas

Production Secretary - Carol Pettit

Design - Don Badger


From Express & Echo - 13 Mar 1981:

Karen Barrett... was very creditable....

From The Stage: a Note of Hope

Tom Stoppard's Enter a Free Man is an interesting play because it focuses so clearly on a problem which faces many people in the modern world - what to do with one's freedom.

Last night's performance by the amateur Estuary Players in Matthews Hall Topsham, handled this fundamental issue of existentialism sympathetically.

Anthony Morris in the leading part of pathetic George Riley was quite convincing, and Gillian Yates, as his wife, Persephone, was always well-controlled - though the part is not demanding.

Karen Barrett as their daughter was very creditable in her rather more complex role.

One of the main themes running through the play is that of isolation and its effects on human relationships. The three principal actors already mentioned clearly emphasised the desolation and loneliness engendered by that isolation.

The play is well constructed in that there is a clear catharsis which brings Riley to the dubious realities of everyday life. But more than that - the play ends on a note of hope - however humble, when George and Linda return home and there is a hint of the family being reunited.

Stoppard would have us believe that there is a ray of light gleaming through the murky viscosity of the daily grind ...

Altogether, the play was well-chosen and well-acted. It is certainly worth seeing on one of the remaining two nights.

- Reviewed by: G.D.

From Estuary News:

Estuary Players.... truly professional in effect....

Congratulations to all members of Estuary Players who were engaged in the production of Tom Stoppard's Enter a Free Man that was performed at the Matthews Hall, Topsham on 12, 13 and 14 March.

High praise must go to all the actors who were so well cast but an especial tribute should I feel, be paid to Gill Yates and Anthony Morris who were admirably suited to the demanding character parts that they sustained with such ease throughout the play.

Estuary Players as amateurs are indeed showing themselves as being truly professional in effect; to those valuable supports behind the scenes must go thanks and much appreciation for all their hard work, since without them there would have been no show to applaud. We are fortunate to be able locally to see such fine performances of first rate plays. I should like to congratulate Don Badger on the excellence of his design and lay-out for the posters and programmes.

However, for any disappointment felt over the lack of a fuller attendance on the first night of this production I should like to suggest that for future occasions more attention to publicity is paid and add the plea that the Estuary Players themselves might perhaps be less modest and attempt to blow their own trumpets loud and clear for the benefit of those who seem not to notice posters!

- Reviewed by: Patricia Gill