Don’t miss the ‘Little Lily Harley’ tour!

As the summer has gone on & we have begun to open up & raise capacity bookings have gone crazy. Venue after venue is now filling up & getting sold out – and we really can’t expand anymore as we are still going to do some social-distancing. If you want to see the show then you need to get on with it & book! There are a few venues which have plenty of room, so you may like to go there. These include in Dorset, Bradford Abbas & Stourpaine, in Hampshire, Hambledon, in Surrey, Walton-on-Thames, in West Sussex, Billingshurst, in East Sussex, Arlington, Barcombe, East Dean & Hadlow Down, and in Kent, Fairseat. All lovely venues with plenty of room still. Get booking!

We have had some excellent responses so far to our opening performances

Just to say we saw Little Lily Harley last night in Haslemere and it was pure bloody magic. So wonderful to see The Rudes on the road again, a special little piece of summer after a rubbish year. I hope the gods of weather smile on you for the rest of the tour – Drs Hester Wain & Graham Brown 

Congratulations and thank you!!  Last night was fantastic at Halnaker – our group enjoyed it so much – brilliantly done!  Now we’ll have to wait another year – can’t wait!! – Hazel Allinson

Thank you for a fantastic show last night in Haslemere – Jamie Hall

A really lovely evening at Haslemere yesterday. Congratulations to cast/crew for a wonderful performance, and to a guest appearance from Fosca! – Amanda Clegg

I watched the Rudes with a gang of us last night in Dial Post and it was amazing.  So good to have you back playing for us and as a big fan of Fosca, I was thrilled to see him! – Michelle Low 

Another success, absolutely brilliant evening well done to the gang. It was so good to go out and enjoy ourselves. Looking forward to the next one. Maybe you can do something with Charlie’s later life, that would be great fun – Pauline Saunders, Dial Post

Tickets on sale now!

Tickets are now on sale from this web site – Book tickets. Please read through the details.

What is ‘Little Lily Harley’ about?

‘Little Lily Harley’ is about Charlie Chaplin’s childhood in Lambeth. With a drunken but charismatic actor father who was rarely around & a beautiful young actress mother who had three children by different fathers, he had to learn along-side his big brother Sydney how to survive a very precarious existence. Sometimes cared for by other people, sometimes in a disciplinarian school for orphans & destitute children, sometimes separated from Sydney & sometimes living on the street (as a child!), he nevertheless managed to triumph over all this to become arguably the greatest film actor ever.

Hannah Chaplin, his mother (stage name ‘Little Lily Harley’ – & the play is as much about her), taught Charlie how to go, as we call it, ‘though the little door’ into his imagination. Here he could dream & be anything, rehearse the characters he met, especially their walks, & escape from his pain. She taught him this especially when she had to go away, sometimes into the workhouse & sometimes into mental institutions as she lost grip of reality, so that he didn’t miss her. By aged five when she had a memory lapse on stage at the Aldershot barracks in the canteen, he took over & won the audience back.

“When I wrote this play in 2019, I could not have known how apt it would be for today. The message of hope & triumph over pain, through the imagination & laughter, is really important for today because people are desperate to see theatre, escape for a while & feel what hope can mean. That is why we must do it!” (Pete Talbot – Writer & director).

In the meantime…

We will leave you with the poem that ends the first half of the play. Hopefully you will be able to understand the Cockney accent! It’s Charlie’s ‘muvver’ entreating her boys to stay strong, a message for us all at the moment.

When storms an’ tempests moan an’ crack,

When billowin’ winds blow bleak an’ black,

An’ ‘obgoblins an’ beasties squeal

So ‘ardened men in terror reel,

An’ rattlin’ squalls break limbs from trees

          An’ ‘earts… that are so dear to me!

When governments, aufori’ies,

An’ well-meant schemes, false chari’ies,

Drive the poor darn t’ their knees

An’ do it wiv impuni’y! –

When actions wound an’ words concuss,

An’ people start desertin’ us,

Pray tha’ they don’t, f’ pi’y’s sake!

But if they do, we… will… no’… break!

And one final little treat to keep you going!

But don’t forget, the ‘The End’ in this clip is not the end, just a new beginning! Click here 

Learn more about The Rudes

If you would like to learn more about us & our work then…

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