Three Plays by Charles Way

Charles Way
Publication Date: 
Thursday, February 23, 1995
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’Dead Man’s Hat’ explores the myths of the Old American West, with many an acknowledgement to films like Shane and High Plains Drifter. A compelling stranger arrives at a remote homestead. Seventeen year-old Anne is ready to fall under his spell. Her mother, Kate, remains suspicious but she is desperate for help against the local rancher who is after their land. Is this stranger their saviour or their downfall?

’Paradise Drive’ is the story of a family during the 1980’s, ’four strangers bound in blood’. David works for British Rail and is about to leave the Labour Party. Jennifer, his wife, seems to have lost purpose to her life. Their daughter, Sally, is upwardly mobile and marries an ad man while son John, is a struggling artist. The play moves through a series of painfully humorous family occasions towards its tragic climax.

’In The Bleak Midwinter’ is based on a medieval mystery play. Zac, the dreaming shepherd, and Miriam, his pragmatic, long-suffering wife, journey from Black Mountains border country to Bethlehem where they must register for the ’poll tax’. Along the way they are plagued by sheep-stealer Mak and his lively girlfriend, Gill, not to mention a certain Mary and Joseph.

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