Six of Òran Mór’s best ever A Play, A Pie and A Pint productions will be presented onto the small screen by BBC Scotland in a new six part series.
Beginning next month, the series kicks off with Chic Murray: A Funny Place For A Window, written by Stuart Hepburn and starring Dave Anderson, Maureen Carr and Brian James O’Sullivan. On what is his last day on this earth, Chic takes a musical look back at the ups and downs, triumphs and tragedies of his glittering, but tragically flawed career.
Other popular plays to be adapted by the BBC include:
Toy Plastic Chicken
Starring Neshla Caplan, David James Kirkwood and Anna Russell-Martin
In the play, a toy plastic chicken going through airport checks is suspected of being a bomb, leading to the interrogation and screening of its female owner for domestic radicalisation. Writer Uma Nada-Rajah based her blackly comedic exploration of degradation and revolt on a real experience. As well as her work as a playwright, she also works as a nurse. Based in Kirknewton, she trained with the acclaimed French theatre school, École Philippe Gaulier, is a graduate of the Young Writers’ Program at the Royal Court Theatre and a recipient of a New Playwrights’ Award from Playwrights’ Studio Scotland. Her other plays include The Constant K Determines the Ultimate Fate of the Universe and The Dubai Papers. Toy Plastic Chicken will be her first work to be showcased on television.
A Respectable Widow Takes To Vulgarity
Starring Anne Kidd and Craig McLean
This play depicts a recently widowed elderly lady, who strikes up an unlikely friendship with a young lad at her husband’s company, and goes on a mission to learn how to give verbal vent to her repressed emotions. It has been written by seasoned playwright Douglas Maxwell. His many plays include Yer Granny, Fever Dream: Southside, and Mancub and have been staged internationally from New York to South Korea, from New Zealand to Hong Kong. A Respectable Widow Takes To Vulgarity will be his first work in recent times to have been shown on television.
Starring Julie Duncanson, Robin Laing and Megan Shandley
A comic tale, fraught with duplicity and dodgy ethics, that sees three strangers meet in a 24 hour gym late at night to negotiate the sale of a human kidney. Meat Market (main image) was the first theatre play penned for writer Chris Grady, who cut his teeth writing for comedy sketches. He is the co-creator and co-writer of BBC Radio Scotland’s Saddled. Chris is also a story producer on Scot Squad and regularly writes for River City Other writing credits include projects with Greg McHugh – Gary; Tank Commander, the Election Special and Gary Goes to Hollywood.
Starring Anita Vettesse and Gavin Jon Wright
Ring Road is a play about forty year old Lisa, who in thrall to a mid-life crisis, makes an indecent proposal to her brother in-law, to father a baby for her and end her childlessness. Actress Anita Vettesse, who appeared in Bob Servant, has been forging a career as a noted writer in recent years, including work for River City as well as Falling for BBC Radio Drama, and an episode of The Break for BBC Three. Her other plays have included Happy Hour, From the Air, and Eddie and the Slumber Sisters and she has recently become writer in residence at the National Theatre in Scotland. Ring Road will be her first original work to be showcased on television.
Based at Òran Mór in the West End of Glasgow, A Play, a Pie and a Pint produces the most new-writing of any theatre in the UK. Founded by Colin Beattie and the late David MacLennan in 2004, the theatre company now yields 35 new plays, running for 42 weeks of the year.
Òran Mór’s Colin Beattie said “When we created Òran Mór our main objective was to bring together the visual arts, theatre, literature and music, making them available to us, the ordinary guy. A Play, A Pie and A Pint cements our philosophy of ‘Arts for All – All Year Round.”
After running for 15 years, the founding principles of A Play, a Pie and a Pint remain steadfast – a new play at lunchtime every week that lasts no more than an hour, accompanied by a pie and a pint. As well as producing 33 new plays per year, Òran Mór also biannually hosts its much-adored adult pantomimes – both Summer and Winter – which have become a staple of the Glasgow theatrical calendar.
“MacLennan could hardly have imagined just how successful his initiative would be” (The Scotsman)
April Chamberlain, one of two artistic directors who took over after MacLennan, said: “There’s a freshness to PPP. We put on 35 new plays a year.
“Our audience comes really regularly. They see more theatre than any other audience in Scotland. There’s a real connection. They soon tell us if it’s not to their liking.”
“BBC to give ‘pie and a pint’ lunchtime plays wider airing” The Times
“Historic Glasgow venue’s famous A Play A Pie and A Pint shows to be turned into BBC dramas” The Daily Record
Please visit What’s On for upcoming shows and ticket information