Join St Mary’s House in Bramber for enthralling short play performances

Michael Chance SUS-150826-102820001
Michael Chance SUS-150826-102820001

A drama double bill will take place at St Mary’s House, Bramber on Saturday September 5.

Originally from London’s West End, these enthralling short plays star Michael Chance as Ian Fleming and Keith Drinkel as Laurence Olivier – two of the most iconic figures of the 20th century.

In ‘The Man With The Golden Pen’ Michael Chance portrays Fleming as he sets about creating his alter-ego, James Bond.

Ian Fleming, the creator of James Bond, Secret Agent 007, stands before the audience, a Martini in hand, a terrified look in his eye. At 42, he is about to do the thing he most fears…. he is getting married!

It is 1952, and he is putting the finishing touches to his first Bond book, Casino Royale. And Bond is with us – an icon of class and everything Fleming aspires to.

This one-man play is a supremely entertaining insight in to the life of Ian Fleming.

In ‘Larry’, we find Laurence Olivier in his New York Hotel Suite recovering from a life-threatening illness, fearing he would never be fit enough to act again.

A surprise telephone call from film director John Schlesinger to c-star with Dustin Hoffman has banished those fears and breathed new life into this most resilient of actors. As he prepares for his first day of shooting, Olivier reflects on his past and considers the future.

He talks of his great film and stage roles, the Old Vic and National the Theatre, his marriages to Jill Esmond, Vivian Leigh and Joan Plowright, his children, of working with John Gielgud, Alec Guinness, Noel Coward and Dustin Hoffman.

In Act Two, Olivier is about the film King Lear for television. He knows it to be his last great role. We learn of his punishing fitness regime, his final days at his beloved National Theatre and, most dramatically of all, his lengthy battle with attacks of terrifying stage fright. Michael Chance has appeared in TV programmes as varied as Poirot, Ten Books That Changed the World, Channel 4’s Come Dine with Me and EastEnders.

He has performed on the London stage as well as in New York and many other venues. Keith Drinkel has appeared on TV in Casualty, EastEnders, Doctors and Judge John Deed.

He has performed in many roles on the London stage, as well as Chichester and other theatres around the country.w

This event takes place at St Mary’s House, Bramber, on Saturday 5 September at 2.30pm. Tickets, which include tea and cake, are £25 and can be obtained by phoning 01903 816205, online via the website, or email

Report and pictures contributed by Alan Durden.