CLASSIC mystery drama “An Inspector Calls” from the pen of J. B. Priestley is next up from former Burnley-based Garrick Theatre Group.
It is considered one of Priestley’s best known works for the stage and one of the classics of mid-20th century English theatre. It was written and first performed (in Russia) in 1945 and the following year arrived in London’s West End.
In 1954 it was made into a film starring Alastair Sim as the inspector.
It opens with Arthur Birling, a wealthy mill owner and well regarded local politician, celebrating the engagement of his daughter Sheila to Gerald Croft, the son of Sir George Croft of Croft’s Ltd, a competitor of Birling’s company.
With him are his wife Sybil, his son Eric, Sheila and Gerald.
The party is interrupted by the Birling’s servant announcing the arrival of Insp.Goole, wanting to speak to the family about the death of a young woman earlier that day.
How each member of the Birling family and Gerald are involved in this tragic event is the focal point of this absorbing and shocking story.
Direction is in the capable hands of Clifford Spencer, who has been involved with The Garrick since 1950, and has directed and appeared in many of its productions.
He has served as a committee member, vice-chairman, chairman, and, from 2006, the president.
His last production for the Garrick was “Happy Jack”, in November 2009.
Clifford will be assisted by Alan Hargreaves, who plays the role of Insp. Goole and is another experienced face in local amateur theatre.
He has appeared with the Garrick many times, his last appearance being in “The Understanding” in November 2005 and he also directed “On Golden Pond” in November 2004.
“An Inspector Calls” is at the ACE Centre, Nelson, from March 23rd to 26th, at 7-30 p.m. Admission is £8.50 and £6 for students and the under 16s.