A View to a Haunt
by Peter Redgrove

BBC Radio 3: The Sunday Play

Broadcast: Sunday 3rd May 1992 @ 7:30 p.m.

Hordes of people, all dressed in white with coloured ribbons, dance in the streets of Cornwall as twilight arrives on May Day as the Padstow 'Obby 'Oss weaves its ancient way through the town. Anne, a psychotherapist, wants to try a new way to discuss dreams so she has called an urgent meeting with two other practising psychotherapists, for they now meet so seldom, and seldom agree.

When Anne started as a therapist, anybody who was disturbed in a certain way was called mad. And the whole thing about madness was that each person's delusion was that person's. They were shut-ins; shut into their madness - that was their misery. As psychotherapists, Anne, Kate, and Sophie have all opened doors - different doors - but now Anne finds all the doors open up to very similar places. People no longer dream their different individual dreams, they dream dreams which are so similar. It's like a lot of people starting off in some individual part of the dream maze and all turning up together in the same centre.

What awaits for them in this centre is why Anne wanted each doctor to bring two recent case histories, chosen at random. She wants them to be prepared to drop technicalities and interpretations, to tell them as stories - to be like storytellers, real ones, so they can see it, as if they were there. The six case histories they tell as stories are:

1) "Laura" - Everyone is saying 9-year-old Laura's a demon... including Laura.
2) "Desperately Seeking Rose" - A homeless man tries to stop a ghost from coming by killing women.
3) "The Oldest Women in the World" - An old woman claims to be immortal.
4) "The Fountaineer" - John loves water in the form of fountains and has a passionate relationship with the Nature Spirit.
5) "The Ghost of Goldengrove" - Newly built executive homes on the site of ruined Goldengrove Hall are visited by ghosts.
6) "Love of the Invisible Rose" - A secular ghost story with worldwide consequences.

With Anne Atkins [Dr. Anne], Janet Dale [Dr. Kate], Kathryn Hurlbutt [Dr. Sophie], Susan Mann [Laura Grey], Sheila Kelley [Mary Grey, Laura's Mother], Gordon Reid [Harry Grey, Laura's Father], David Holt [Bob Grey, Laura's Brother], Struan Rodger [Michael aka Rose's Husband], Kathryn Hunt [Patty], Tamsin Greig [Elly / The Ghost of Goldengrove], Mary Wimbush [Mrs. Bright], David Robb [John, the Fountaineer], Susan Jeffrey [Damaris, the Nature Spirit], Andrew Wincott [Rupert], Lisa Bowerman [Jemima, Rupert's Wife], Simon Chandler [Peter], and Veronica Needa [Yuko].

Other parts played by members of the cast.

Directed by Nigel Bryant at BBC Pebble Mill Studios, Birmingham.

Re-broadcast on Sunday 28th January 1996 @ 7:30 p.m.

120 min.


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