30th January to 3rd February 1996
Cider with Rosie played to full houses throughout the week, the "House Full" boards being displayed outside the theatre on a number of occasions
Laurie Lee was born in 1914 in the Cotswold village of Slad, Gloucestershire where he spent his childhood.
Cider with Rosie, published in 1959, is Laurie Lee's best known work. It is a nostalgic and evocative account of his childhood in a secluded Cotswold valley, and describes a vanished rural world 'a world of silence...of hard work and necessary patience...of white narrow roads, rutted by hooves and cartwheels, innocent of oil or petrol'.
Laurie set out from his home 'one mid-summer morning' at the age of nineteen to walk to London. He carried with him a tent, a violin, and only a few shillings and some biscuits and cheese in his pocket. He walked to Southampton because he wanted to see the sea (perhaps the tide was out when the choir outing went to Weston Super Mare!). Here he stayed in a down-town boarding house for a shilling a night and near there, under a bridge by the old Terminus station, he had his first experience of 'busking'.
After a few weeks he travelled along the coast as far as Worthing (he was moved on by a policeman whilst playing 'Bless This House' outside Chichester Cathedral and then on to London where he worked as a builder's labourer before setting off to Spain, walking from Vigo to Andalucia, paying his way by playing the violin. The account of his journey is described in the second volume of his autobiography As I Walked Out One Mid Summer Morning.
A Moment of War, the third volume of Laurie Lee's autobiography published in 1991 is an account of his return to Spain in 1937, when the country was in the grip of civil war.
He has described himself as a chance witness of 'the end of a thousand years of life'.
Laurie Lee returned to live in Slad and died in May 1997
The Southampton Evening Echo wrote:
Laurie Lee's nostalgic account of his childhood in a rural Cotswold village is brought to life on stage by the Southampton based amateur group The Maskers Theatre Company............. The set showed Laurie's home, the outside and a school room by using different levels on the stage ........... the story moved along at a gentle pace with many moments to make you smile ........ this production, directed by Mollie Manns was impressive.
|Mrs Moore||Chris Baker|
|Crabby B||Sonia Morris|
|Miss Wardley||Belinda Drew|
|Assistant Teacher||Jan Ward|
|Spadge Hopkins||Carl Dunnington|
|Walt Kerry||Dominic Peckham|
|Granny Trill||Hazel Burrows|
|Granny Wallon||Philippa Taylor|
|Mrs Davies||Jean Durman|
|Mr Davies||Graham Hill|
|Youths||Carl Dunnington, Matt Betteridge, Emanuel Vattier|
|Girls||Claire East, Michelle Cox|
|Bar Maid||Jan Ward|
|Miss Flynn||Belinda Drew|
|Uncle Ray||David Pike|
|Uncle Sid||Geoff Wharam|
|Fred the Milk||Albie Minns|
|Betty Gleed||Linzi Harvey|
|Mrs Pimsbury||Chris Baker|
With Hannah Stansbridge and Paul Woodman
|For the Maskers|
|Production and Stage Manager||Ken Spencer|
|Assistant Stage Managers||Georgia Emm, Tamasin Garland, Louise Merritt|
|Technical Coordinator||Ron Tillyer|
|Set Design||Ken Spencer|
|Set Construction||Bryan Langford, Geoff Cook, Douglas Shiell, Ron Randall|
|Lighting Design||Clive Weeks|
|Lighting Operators||Nathan Weeks, Edward Randall, Gemma Smith|
|Sound||Laurie Gee, Andy Roberts|
|Properties||Ella Lockett, Christel Mauffet|
|Poster Photograph||Hazel Burrows|
|Show Photography||Clive Weeks|
|Publicity||Michael Patterson, Philippa Taylor, Jan Ward, Harry Tuffill, Jim Portman, Vicky Griffiths|
|Programme Production||Sandy White|
|Wardrobe||Christine Baker, Hazel Burrows|
|Chaperones||Angela Stansbridge, Jan Ward|