Short Stories & Plays

NUMBER 60 TO THE SOMME

Greg Mosse & Carol Godsmark

MEDIA RELEASE – November 2015

Critical Acclaim for New Play NUMBER 60 TO THE SOMME 

Number 60 to the somme  a play with music celebrating the ‘only and best’ B-Type London bus by Greg Mosse and Carol Godsmark, opened with a World Premiere on 3 November at the Riverside Theatre, Chichester College, Chichester, West Sussex, running to 7 November with sell-out performances and glowing reviews.  ‘[Number 60 to the Somme] is beautifully judged and beautifully delivered.’ ‘A truly-excellent night, a production which comes close to perfection of a play which is rich and absorbing delivered by a terrific cast.’ Phil Hewitt, Entertainments Group Editor and critic, Chichester Observer.

Brighton Argus:  ‘No. 60 To The Somme by Greg Mosse and Carol Godsmark, commemorates the First World War with a story about a London bus.’ ‘Ben Cassan as Jim demonstrates wonderfully repressed emotion in a romance with the coolly determined Vera of Susie Coutts. Touching, funny, sad.’ Four stars

Based on a storyline from Carol Godsmark’s novel, Ghost Army, it tells the story of Jim Swift, a London double decker bus driver who, against his family’s wishes, enlists to drive his bus to the Front, one of the many leaving London streets in their red livery to Front Line battles for the First World War effort.

The Great War was an extraordinary mobilisation of men, women, animals and machines. The B-Type bus – open-topped, steel-wheeled, solid, dependable – was dispatched in huge numbers – 1500 – to serve in Belgium and France. The vehicles became troop transports, mobile hospitals, pigeon lofts – and were put to any and every perilous use on the rough roads and tracks.

This unknown story of World War One is brought to vivid life by an ensemble company directed by Roger Redfarn, his 22 London productions including Dad’s Army with the original cast, What a Performance with David Suchet plus Chichester Festival Theatre’s Underneath the Arches and Song of Singapore. Roger,also responsible for national tours as well as worldwide productions, was Artistic Director of the Theatre Royal Plymouth for ten years, Cameron Macintosh commenting ‘There is no other theatre in the country that has the range of high quality theatre across its stages than this city enjoys.’ Roger is a Winston Churchill Fellow.

Number 60 to the Somme continues its run in Bognor Regis in January 2015.  Roger Redfarn, Carol Godsmark and Greg Mosse are in discussion with other interested producers.

To make enquiries, to book this play and for other cast and production information, please contact Carol Godsmark, carol@carolgodsmark.co.uk 01243 538810 or 0771 7777 478.

 Number 60 to the Somme

can also be a cabaret or collage-style play with songs for three actors

© Mosse Associates Ltd 2014
Characters played by three actors include Jim Swift, bus driver, Vera Thwaites, his girl,
Vesta Tilley, Marie Lloyd, Historian, Captain Jackson.

LETTERMAN’S DAILY BREAD

Carol Godsmark

One act comedy. Two main characters: George and Prue, from Orpington
Will George, post retirement, ever please Prue with his bread-making and letters of complaints to corporate rip-offs? Letters are fired off to IKEA, Nokia, the British Museum archaeological digs department, the taxman, Mars Petcare and even David Cameron who reciprocates his love of a good, homemade loaf.

‘Dear Mr. Cameron, I can see by your increasing girth, something you and I share with the rest of the nation, sorry to say, that you like bread so much that you find the time to make your own frugal loaf. This is a highly commendable aspect of your leadership, a fine role model for the likes of us plebs. I too have a Panasonic but my loaves, however much I experiment, can merely be put to building the new housing stock my two children desperately seek. Is your secret the Cotswold Crunch at £30 a bag or the spelt which is, to my mind, a foreign type too far for the likes of this Orpington retiree? Do you have any secret ingredients missing from the instructions that you would like to…’

Performed at Chichester Festival Theatre’s playwriting course/acting evening March, 2014 in the Minerva Theatre and is now re-written for a two act play for radio or stage.

Other short plays and short stories

STEALING WHITE

In three acts, for radio. Six characters.
Synopsis of play: The Chinese industry is emerging from its many years of Communism to compete in the world market and for its burgeoning middle class home market in the white goods (fridges, cookers, freezers etc) market. But they are missing one key ingredient: the paint pigment to ensure that these white goods do not yellow after a short period, the market collapsing as a result.
Chinese scientists cannot find the right formula, Industrial espionage, therefore, the key to their success, the storyline, over the course of several years, following US scientists working on the perfect pigment in a powerful, global US chemical company. Chinese forces, in collaboration with others, attempt to steal the perfect formula. In short, stealing white.

HEART THROB

Three act play: Wallace, investigative journalist; Cherise, Wallace’s new girlfriend; Tim, Wallace’s estranged son; Hugo, head of computer system’s Ministry of Defence department, Cardiologist.
The nation is in deadly danger. So is investigative journalist Wallace after a heart op.
Will be survive or succumb to the ultimate sacrifice to save his country?

THE BUS STOPS HERE

Play in Three Acts.
Take a collection of people. Add a cause. Arm with unquenchable right for justice and freedom. Assemble them in a room and turn up the pressure cooker. Unleash. This is the story of the freedom riders in Alabama and other southern US states, 1961.
Characters: (Sam, the black owner of the hardware shop who loathes injustice, 65, Ed, a white high-principled university professor, 31, Wilbur, a black Episcopal clergyman keen only on non-violence, 29, Dan, a totally committed, blinkered civil rights worker (white) 28, Clark, an uneducated, poor black motor mechanic 38, Gloria, a dogmatic, striving black student 22, Gary, a non-violence expert, 44. Others in cast, all minor: police, activists, senators.

Other plays on request.

Short Stories

OUR TED

A short story on Ted, the first teddy bear
‘When will you be created? Matilda, wife of Morris Michlam of Novelty Toys, Brooklyn, has that task. She will make your legs, arms and head, then a trunk which she will stuff with excelsior. She will attach all your limbs and your ursine head to your body using washers and bolts for easy movement. She will work methodically by the flickering electric light bulb to make you. She will apply black buttons for eyes so that you can see your world and Morris will name you after Teddy Roosevelt, the cuddly President. You will sit in the shop window for all to admire. The ladies in black carriages will come to buy your brothers and sisters for their children or for themselves.

But as you are the first, very collectable Teddy Bear, you will go home with Manhattan socialite Mrs Daisy Parker who has taken a fancy to your expensive furry sable mink body. She will sit you in her drawing room on Fifth Avenue overlooking Central Park, her guests stroking your coating made from an old mink stole stored in the attic by Matilda’s mother. You will not play with children. You will hear music being played by string quartets in the chandeliered room, be picked up by maids dusting the marble mantelpiece, your throne, and you will gaze unblinkingly at the grand black-tailed and feather boa-d guests swirling the room with their clinking French Champagne. You will be on nodding terms with one guest, musician John Bratton who will compose The Teddy Bear’s Picnic in your honour. Flashbulbs flash, your picture taken for the New York Times.’ Beginning of short story of Ted’s adventurous life after Daisy Parker’s sudden death.

CAPTAIN KENNY AND THE GREEN HORNET

Will newly appointed American Air Force Captain, delinquent Kenny, call the shots with his crew
when the Green Hornet bomber ditches in the Pacific during Pearl Harbour’s war?

TRIAL & TRIBULATION, VENICE-STYLE

American students on the rampage in wintery Venice find no way out, long-term.

FIFTY TURNS OF THE WHEEL, BARNABAS

Young, willful Barnabas learns a lifetime lesson at the village water treadmill