Finding Neverland

Transcript written by and used with the courtesey of Angela Sugden

Voices
Lights up. 5 minute call please. Places. Everyone to their places.


Charles
Opening nights? I love opening nights. How are you?


Man 1
Good to see you.


Man 2
Good evening, Charles, this is my wife.


Charles
Oh, Lydia, Herbert, may I give you a peck?


Man 3
One of Mr Barrie’s finest?


Charles
Oh, that genius Gusmann has done it again, it’s the best thing I’ve produced in 25 years.


Man 3
Really?


Charles
I already have investors interested back home in New York.


Man 3
See you on Broadway.


Voice
1st position, people. Standing by please, ladies and gentlemen, if you could take your opening positions please. Beginners please take your opening positions. Audience are coming in, standing by.


Usher
Good audience.


James
Sorry?


Usher
Good audience, tonight.


James
That’s great. Thank you. How much longer?


Usher
10 minutes.


Charles
I love opening nights. I want a dance with your wife at the after party. Oh, my goodness.


John
Good evening, sir.


Charles
How are you, John?


John
Very well.


Charles
It’s the best thing that I’ve produced in 25 years. Hello, George, how are you?


Man
Healthy and wealthy I see.


Charles
You’ve rearranged a holiday for me. I won’t forget.


Man
For you, Charles.


Charles
You won’t regret it.


Man
I’m sure.


Mrs Snow
Have you got the tickets?


Mr Snow
Yes, they’re in my pocket.


Mrs Snow
Oh, there’s Mrs Barrie.


Mary Barrie
Mr & Mrs Snow.


Mrs Snow
We were so hoping to speak with your husband before the show.


Mr Snow
Have you seen him?


Mary
I’m not sure where he is actually.


Mrs Snow
We do miss seeing you on stage, you were so wonderful.


Mary
Yes? Well it’s been some time now. Are you all right to find your seat?


Mrs Snow
Oh yes, yes. See you at the party then.


Mary
Excuse me. Would you find Mr Barrie and remind him that they’re doing his play this evening.


Usher
Yes, Madam.


Mary
Thank you.


Charles
Let’s close the doors.


Actor 1
Really, I mustn’t inconvenience you in this way. I can wait quite well in the shop.


Actor 2
‘Tis no inconvenience, the shop is chilly.


Actor 1
And there is a fire here. Really, uncommonly good.


Usher
Sorry, sir, um, Mrs Barrie wanted me to remind you that the play’s begun, though I imagine you know that.


James
They hate it.


Usher
Sir?


James
It’s like a dentist’s office out there, why?


Usher
I wouldn’t say they hate it, sir.


James
What do you think? Do you like it?


Usher
I’ve just been hiding, sir.


James
Yes or no, I’m not bothered.


Usher
I’m not really qualified to. . .


James
Do you like it? Is it crap?


Usher
Crap, sir?


James
Go on, say it, just say it. Its shite isn’t it? Go on, say it.


Usher
I don’t know if I’m. . .


James
It’s bulls’ pizzle, Mr Barrie, go on, say it.


Usher
It’s bulls’ pizzle, Mr Barrie.


James
I knew it.


Usher
No, I haven’t even seen it.


James
I knew it. Thank you. Thank you very much.


Man 1
Absolute rubbish from start to finish.


Man 2
Yes, I found it fearfully dull.


Man 3
You can say goodbye to your investment, old boy.


Charles
Good to see you, my apologies.


James
We’ll get them with the next one, Charles, I promise.


Charles
Of course we will, James.


James
I know you put a lot into this one.


Charles
A fortune James, but I’m fortunate because I can afford to lose a fortune.


James
Can you?


Charles
No, I can’t. How are you?


James
Arthur


Arthur
James. You were sorely missed at the last club meeting.


James
Was I?


Arthur
We were beginning to wonder which is your hobby, writing or cricket.


James
You don’t say.


Mary
You wanted to speak with Mr Barrie didn’t you?


Mrs Snow
Well yes, but we shouldn’t interrupt them, should we?


Mary
I don’t see why not.


Arthur
If you ask me, the problem lies in our batting order.


James
You’re absolutely right.


Mary
James.


James
Hello, darling.


Mary
You remember Mr & Mrs Snow, don’t you?


James
Mrs Snow.


Mrs Snow
Mr Barrie.


James
Mr Snow.


Mary
So, the Snows have been waiting to meet with you all evening.


Mrs Snow
Oh, yes.


James
Is that right?


Mrs Snow
Your play this evening. . .it was remarkable, wasn’t it?


James
Was it? Thank you, that’s very kind of you. I’m glad you liked it.


Mr Snow
How did you feel it went?


James
I think I can do better.


Mr Snow
Really?


James
Mary, hello.


Mary
Yes, James?


James
I’m headed off to the park if you’d like to join me. It’s a beautiful morning.


Mary
You’ll be working, won’t you?


James
Perhaps, yes.


Mary
I’ll let you to your work then.


Emma
Morning, Mr Barrie.


James
Morning, Emma.


Emma
Have a good day, sir.


James
And you. That’s it, go on boy. That’s right. Good boy. Grab it.


Sylvia
Who do you belong to?


Michael
Excuse me, sir, you’re standing on my sleeve.


James
Am I? So sorry. I might point out you’re lying under my bench.


Michael
I have to I’m afraid. I’ve been put in the dungeon by the evil Prince George. I’m sorry if it bothers you.


James
Well if you’re trapped in the dungeon there isn’t much to be done, now is there? Perhaps I could slide a key to you through the bars?


Michael
I wouldn’t risk it, sir. The evil Prince George has tortured many men.


George
I’m sorry, is he bothering you, sir? My brother can be an amazingly irritating sort of person.


James
Ah ha, Prince George I gather? I understand you are the horrible tyrant who imprisoned this unfortunate wretch.


George
Not horrible really, but a firm ruler yes, kind and tolerant.


James
And what precisely has, er. . . What did you say your name was?


Michael
Michael.


James
What precisely is Michael’s crime?


George
He’s my younger brother.


James
Ah! Fair enough. Sorry, lad, cannot free you.


Michael
That’s all right.


Jack
Do you mind us playing with your dog?


James
No, go on.


George
This is Jack, second in line to the throne, and that one’s Michael, he’s only five.


Michael
And I’m in prison for it.


Sylvia
I’m so sorry. Are my boys bothering you?


Michael
We’re not bothering him, Mum.


James
No.


Sylvia
Michael, darling, come out from under there.


Michael
I can’t, I’m in prison.


Sylvia
Oh, I see.


James
J M Barrie, pleased to meet you.


Sylvia
J M Barrie the author? What a pleasure, Sylvia Llewellyn-Davies.


Jack
Are you a writer?


James
I am.


Sylvia
He’s a playwright, Jack, quite a famous one at that. I apologise, I imagine you are writing.


James
No, not at all.


Sylvia
Where’s Peter?


George
What have you written, Mr Barrie?


James
Well, currently, I make my living entertaining Princes and their courts with my trained bear, Porthos. If you command your brother Peter to join us, I am willing, Prince George, to give you just such a performance in exchange for the freedom of this prisoner of course.


George
Very well.


James
Very well. Now, I want you to pay particular attention to the teeth. Some unscrupulous trainers will show you a bear whose teeth have all been pulled, while other cowards will force the brute into a muzzle. Only a true master would attempt these tricks without either measure of safety.


Peter
What did you bring me over here for?


Sylvia
Peter.


Peter
Because this is absurd, it’s just a dog.


Sylvia
Come on, darling.


James
Just a dog?! Porthos, don’t listen to him. Porthos dreams of being a bear, and you want to dash those dreams by saying ‘he’s just a dog’. Tut tut. What a horrible candle-snuffing word. That’s like saying ‘he can’t climb that mountain, he’s just a man.’ Or ‘that’s not a diamond, it’s just a rock.’ Just!


Peter
Fine then, turn him into a bear, if you can.


Sylvia
Peter, where are your manners.


James
With those eyes, my bonnie lad, I’m afraid you’d never see it. However, with just a wee bit of imagination – I can turn around right now, and see, the Great Bear, Porthos. Dance with me.


Sylvia
Thank you, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a performance quite. . . quite like it.


James
We’re here every day, and the bear is always more than happy to perform.


Sylvia
Perhaps we will see you tomorrow then.


James
Perhaps.


Sylvia
Peter, jump up, darling, quick.


George
Bye.


Jack
Bye.


Michael
Bye.


James
Bye.


Sylvia
Peter, didn’t you enjoy that?


Peter
I’ve seen better.


James
Well, Michael wanted the bear kept prisoner with him, and Peter insisted that Michael was hardly prisoner and Porthos simply wasn’t a bear at all. I do very much hope to see them tomorrow.


Mary
What’s her name?


James
Sylvia, erm, Mrs Something-Davies.


Mary
Llewllyn Davies?


James
You know her?


Mary
I know who she is of course. Why she’s of DuMaurier family see. Her father was the artist, her brother’s the actor. And there’s something. . . tragic that happened with her husband. Oh, yes, he died, cancer of the jaw I believe.


James
That’s horrible.


Mary
Yes, apparently he left her with four boys and no income to speak of. Why, if it wasn’t for her mother’s help. . . James, we should have them to dinner.


James
Should we?


Mary
Absolutely, I’ve always wanted to meet Madam DuMaurier, why, she know practically everyone there is worth knowing.


Peter
What are you writing about?


James
Oh, nothing of any great consequence.


Peter
I can’t write.


James
Have you ever kept a journal? Ever tried your hand at writing a play? Well then, how do you know?


Peter
I know, that’s all.


James
I see. Where’s your mother today and the rest of the boys?


Peter
Home. Mother’s got a bit of a chest cold. I’m sure everyone would be happy to see you though, one afternoon. I should leave you to your writing.


James
Peter. I’ll see you later then. Why didn’t you tell me, Charles? You knew it wasn’t any good.


Charles
Why didn’t you tell me, James? You knew it wasn’t any good. Huh? I took an extended lease on the theatre, keeping the actors on.


James
I don’t have another play.


Charles
You will, won’t you?


James
We’ll see.


Man
Need you to sign for the storage, Mr Frohman.


James
It was never meant to be taken seriously.


Charles
You know what happened, James. They changed it.


James
Who changed what?


Charles
The critics, they made it important. Huh. What’s it called? What’s it called?


James
Play.


Charles
Play.


Boys
Bang, bang, bang, etc


Jack
Return the boy to us you nasty Indian.


James
Our people teach boy Indian ways, make him great warrior, our chief ‘Running Nose’ never let him go.


Boys
Bang, bang, bang, etc


James
Me wounded, Peter. Time’s short. You go, spread wings and soar like eagle above enemy. Fly back to our chief, tell him of my brave defeat.


Peter
That’s crazy, Indian’s can’t fly.


James
‘Course they can, go on, go on, go on.


Jack
Listen to us boy, this Indian kidnapped you.


James
Not true! Me kidnap no-one. You ‘lost boy’. I teach you ways of the brave. I take you as my own son.


Peter
You are not my father.


Boys
Bang, bang, bang, etc


Jack
I’ve got him.


Peter
Let me go!


George
Stop it you two.


Jack
Ooh, we are awful, aren’t we?


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