Audio Drama Wiki

Emily Butter: an Occasion Recalled by Henry Reed
Produced by Douglas Cleverdon
Music composed by Donald Swann
Orchestrated by Max Saunders

BBC Women's Chorus
A section of the London Philharmonic Orchestra, leader Thomas Matthews / The Sinfonia of London, conducted by Patrick Savill

First broadcast BBC Third Programme 14.11.1954
Repeat 17.11.1954

New production first broadcast on 25.02.1958
Repeated BBC Third Programme, 15.11.1960 & 28.05.1969
and on BBC Radio 3 in memory of Douglas Cleverdon on 12.06.1987

The third of Henry Reed's radio plays about the imaginary writer Richard Shewin.
Shewin's friend the "lady music writer" Hilda Tablet only played a small part in the first play but by the third had an entire operatic premiere devoted to her.

The Cast[]

Hilda Tablet, a composeress.....Mary O'Farrell
Herbert Reeve, scholar.....Hugh Burden
Harold Reith, a librettist.....Frank Duncan
Elsa Strauss, a singer.....Marjorie Westbury
Gabriel Hall-Pollock, a critic.....Deryck Guyler
Male commentator.....Leonard Sachs, Michael Flanders*
Female commentator.....Betty Hardy
The narrator[not in 1958 cast].....Michael Flanders
Duke of Mulset.....Frank Duncan
Duchess of Mulset.....Cécile Chevreau
An official of the Opera House.....Rolf Lefebvre, Leonard Sachs*
Poets and composers.....David March, Hugh Manning, Harold Reese, Jeffrey Segal

Assumptions in the opera:

Emily Butter.....Marjorie Westbury
Clara Taggart.....Anna Pollak
Helen Sparge.....Marion Studholme
Elizabeth Thwaite.....Rose Hill
Catherine Slot.....Scott Joynt
Mrs Wetherall.....Lily Kettlewell, Sylvia Beamish*
Marilyn.....Diana Maddox, Ann Dowdall*
Dorothy.....Glenice Halliday

  • 2nd Production