Albert Hope

aka Drama '63

Directed by Herbert Wise
Writer: Keith Dewhurst

11 August 1963

  • Martin Dobson . . . . . . . . Customer
    John Evitts . . . . . . . . Frank
    Frank Finlay . . . . . . . . Albert Hope
    Dudley Foster . . . . . . . . Sam Carver
    Julia Foster . . . . . . . . Christine
    Thora Hird . . . . . . . . Mrs. Hope
    George Little . . . . . . . . Mr. Field

  • ALBERT HOPE (Frank Finlay), a barber, ls no Sweeney Todd or Figaro. He's just an ordinary sort of bloke, married, with two daughters, running a small gent's hairdressing business.

    A master of self-deception, he manages in all circumstances to believe that he has acted from the best motives - it is the only thing that keeps the cruel facts of life at bay.

    However, when he goes into hospital for an operation, the experience jolts him out of his complacency. He sees that it is always later than one thinks, and he realises his life has been frittered away.

    Don't get the impression that Keith Dewhurst's play is a tragedy. "I think it is really rather funny," said Keith, "though it has an underlying seriousness. "I have tried to show that people don't change fundamentally. Albert has his moment of truth while in hospital."

    Frank Finlay and Thora Hird were seen together recently in The Hard Case. They team up again for this play. Frank has a very different role this time. "Albert Hope is at the same time funny and pathetic," he said. "Though his situation is pretty desperate, he somehow manages to survive all his trials and tribulations."

    Julia Foster told me: "This play has no real beginning, middle or end. It is just a slice of life. I use a North Country accent for my part as Christine, and of course Thora Hird was a great help to me in getting it right."

    ALAN BLYTH, TV Times