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Pearl is a 1978 radio play by award-winning English playwright John Arden. Set in England in the 1640s, the play concerns a young Irish political operative named Pearl, who, with playwright Tom Backhouse, attempts to sway the political climate in favor of the British Parliament, as part of a plan to achieve Irish sovereignty.

Production[]

Pearl was produced and broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on July 3, 1978, with the following cast:

  • Pearl - Elizabeth Bell
  • Mother Bumroll - Paula Tilbrook
  • Barnabas/Male Voice - David Mahlowe
  • Stage Manager/Casca/Actor - John Jardine
  • Grip - Geoffrey Banks
  • Sowse/Caesar - Ronald Herdman
  • Grimscar/1st Commoner - Peter Jeffrey
  • Backhouse/Soothsayer - David Calder
  • Belladonna - Lynda Marchal
  • Duchess - Kathleen Helme
  • Catso/Marullus - Kenneth Alan Taylor
  • Katerina/Female Voice - Jane Knowles
  • Messenger/Flavius/Actor - Robert Morton
  • Music composed and conducted by Stephen Boxer
  • Musicians Ephraim Segerman and members of the Northern Renaissance Consort
  • Produced by Alfred Bradley

Critical reception[]

The play won the very first Giles Cooper Award in 1978, and is considered one of the finest examples of the medium.

Publication[]

Hardcover and Paperback editions were published by Eyre Methuen in 1979.

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