Alan Ayckbourn: Actor


Five Finger Exercise (1960 / 1961)

Play: Five Finger Exercise
Author: Peter Shaffer
Opening Night:
12 December 1960
Venue:
Library Theatre, Scarborough
Staging:
Round

Director:
Stephen Joseph
Design: Stephen Joseph

Character
Stanley Harrington
Louise Harrington
Clive
Pamela
Walter Langer

Actor
Stanley Page
Hazel Burt
David Jarrett
Rosamund Dickson
Alan Ayckbourn
Stacks Image 192
Alan (left) in Five Finger Exercise
Copyright: Scarborough Theatre Trust

Quotes & Notes

During 1960, Alan Ayckbourn's career was predominantly concentrated on acting at the Library Theatre, Scarborough. He was part of the acting company in both the summer and winter seasons and his playwriting was limited to one show, Dad's Tale, during the winter season.

Five Finger Exercise was first performed by the Studio Theatre Ltd company at the Library Theatre, Scarborough, during the winter 1960 season. It was revived the following year as part of the company's tour to Newcastle-under-Lyme and the summer season at the Library Theatre with the same cast and director.

Review extract from the Gazette And Herald (16 December 1960)
"Alan Ayckbourn gave a sensitive characterisation as the German."

Review extract from the Evening Sentinel (22 December 1960)
"As Clive, David Jarrett gives a brilliant performance. Only Alan Ayckbourn as a cultured German tutor could match the intensity of his performance, and he develops so sensitively the stature he requires as the king-pin of the plot."

Review extract from the Northern Echo (13 December 1960)
"Alan Ayckbourn gave a sensitive characterisation as the German who finds his dreams of a new home almost shattered."

Review extract from The Stage (22 December 1960)
"The gently withdrawn stillness of Walter marked a new challenge and an enlargement of Alan Ayckbourn's range; this is an actor who is fully at home in the medium."

Review extract from the Yorkshire Post (7 June 1961)
"Alan Ayckbourn, however, knows his tutor. I remember this young actor from the very first days of Theatre in the Round. He has matured intro a most sensitive performed with a gentle, humorous understanding of this part. He has attained the stillness of grief remembered and ever present, and a withdrawn and quiet pride. Above all this is a musical role spoken with great beauty and tenderness. It is a performance to remember."

All research for this page by Simon Murgatroyd.