This blog is for English actress, cakemaker and writer Jane Asher, with many pictures and accurate information of one of the most beautiful rock muses from the 20th century.

Friday, 24 March 2017

Stage special: 'Treats', 1976

Treats is a 1975 play by Christopher Hampton about a love triangle. The play is set in 1974, London, in a single room in Ann's flat. There are three characters: Ann (Jane Asher), her former boyfriend Dave (James Bolam), and her lover Patrick (Stephen Moore). It opened at the Royal Court Theatre on February 5, 1976 and then moved to the May Fair Theatre on March 9, 1976.

Jane Asher (Ann), James Bolam (Dave), director Robert Kidd (from behind), and Stephen Moore (Patrick) in reheasal for "Treats" set to open February 5, 1976 at the Royal Court Theatre, London. 

Various scenes from the play.

Hampton's translation of Ibsen's A Doll's House was a huge success. He noted, however, that in the 1970s there were probably as many women trapped in unsatisfactory relationships with abusive men as in the 1870s, and that Ibsen's play was no longer provocative enough. Treats was an instant box office success at the Royal Court and in the West End.

Ann and Patrick are contentedly sitting at home one night, listening to music and talking, when Dave breaks in. His violent temper is clear from the beginning: He punches Patrick on the nose, then refuses to leave, even as Ann threatens to call the police. It soon turns out that Ann used Dave's work trip to Cyprus to break up with him as she had long been planning to do. Now a colleague from work —her new boyfriend, Patrick— moved in with her. Dave refuses to accept the situation and demands an explanation, bullying Ann, and being overly friendly with Patrick. Ann seems determined not to listen to him, particularly when the two men bond against her. Dave tells her she would be bored out of her mind by Patrick and asks her to marry him. She refuses. Dave, however, is crafty and clever enough to succeed: he wins her back and moves back in at the end, succeeding in making both of them miserable.

Photos from the "Treats" theatre programme. From Lady Jane yahoo group.

Stage special: 'Making it Better', 1992

1992 - Drawing of Jane Asher on the cover of the Criterion Theatre programme for her play, Making It Better in which she received top billing. It originally opened at the Hampstead Theatre on February 11, 1992 and later moved to the Criterion on October 21, 1992. 

Larry Lamb as Adrian Harrington, Jane Asher as Diana Harrington, David de Keyser as Josef Pavlicek and Rufus Sewell as Tomas Kratky on stage in different scenes from the James Saunders play Making It Better

It is 1989; Czechoslovakia is struggling with its new-found freedom. In London, Pavlicek and Tomas, two Czechoslovakian émigrés, become involved in the tangled relationship between Diana and Adrian Harrington, who purvey British culture across the globe via the World Service. Adrian has an affair with Tomas, Diana with Pavlicek and then with Tomas... Betrayals  of friends, lovers, countries and ideals  abound in this emotionally exacting and politically stringent comedy, in which nobody plays by the rules and nobody emerges blameless.

Pictures from From the Criterion Theatre programme. From Lady Jane group at yahoo.

Monday, 20 March 2017

Stage special: 'Bedroom Farce', 2009

Three couples, grumpily bedridden Nick (Tony Gardner) and his no-nonsense wife Jan (Lucy Briers), bouncy optimistic newlyweds Malcolm (Daniel Betts) and Kate (Finty Williams), and the mature and upper-middle-class couple Delia (Jane Asher) and Ernest (Nicholas Le Prevost) are linked by the fourth, edgily navel-gazing Trevor (Orlando Seale) and his partner Susannah (Rachel Pickup) in this comedy by Alan Ayckbourn

The show runned from October 2nd to November 28th 2009 at the Rose Theatre, Kingston.

Photos 1 to 4, 6 & 9) Donald Cooper/REX/Shutterstock.
Photo 5) The Guardian.
Photo 7) Express.
Photo 8) The Telegraph.
Photo 10) From the net. If it's yours, drop me a line and I'll give you full credit.
Photo 11) Delcampe.

Friday, 17 March 2017

Stage special: 'The Reluctant debutante', 2011

Jane Asher starred as Sheila Broadbent in The Reluctant Debutante, a play authored by William Douglas Home and directed by Belinda Lang.

The production opened at the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre (Guildford, Surrey) on 9th February 2011, and until the 19th of the same month. Then, it runned at the Theatre Royal Brighton from 21st to 26th February, at the Cambridge Arts Theatre (8th – 12th March 2011), London's Richmond Theatre (14th – 19th March 2011), and finally at The Everyman at Cheltenham (21st – 26th March 2011).

Society couple, Jimmy and Sheila Broadbent (Clive Francis and Jane Asher), are launching their daughter Jane (Louise Calf) into society and have their eye on the perfect husband. Jane, however, has other ideas. The round of balls and parties bores her stiff and the last thing she wants is some stuffy young toff with perfect manners. In fact, the chap she really wants appears to be a perfect cad…

Horrified parents, a conniving cousin and hot society gossip make this a debutante season to remember. Bursting with witty one liners and sparkling dialogue in the tradition of Noel Coward, this affectionate caricature of 1950s British society brings the glamour and charm of the debutante scene gloriously to life.

Photo 1) The Reviews Hub.
Photo 4) The Argus.
Photo 5) BBC News Bristol.

Monday, 13 March 2017

Stage special: 'Festen', 2004

A family group gathers at the magnificent house of patriarch and expert in mind games Helge (Stephen Moore) for a black-tie dinner to celebrate his 60th birthday. He is a successful restaurateur/hotelier with a beautiful wife Else played by Jane Asher. Seemingly the only dark clouds on his horizon are his unpleasantly violent, racist son Michael, played with real vigour by Rory Kinnear; and the sadly mysterious recent death of his daughter Linda. The family is so close-knit that the business colleagues and domestic staff seem like members of a slightly extended version of it. Initially, this adds to the jollity of the occasion. Suddenly, as everybody sits down to dinner and the laudatory speeches commence, a distraught, heartbroken son, Christian, in this case played by Johnny Lee Miller, stands up to speak. By the time he has completed his accusations of incest and rape against his father, nothing can ever be the same again. 

The play is directed by Rufus Norris and written by David Eldridge. It previewed on 15th September 2004 and opened on 23rd September 2004, and it closed on 16th April 2005 at the Lyric Theatre in London.

Photos 1 to 6, 24 to 26) From the net. If they are yours, drop me a line and I'll give you full credit.
Photos 7 to 14) Nigel R. Barklie/REX/Shutterstock
Photos 15 to 23) Robbie Jack/Corbis.
Photos 27 to 40) Geraint Lewis.