|Roy Smiles (Author) is
Ying Tong premiered at the West Yorkshire Playhouse in October 2004 and then transferred to the New Ambassadors Theatre in the West End in February 2005.
Recent theatre credits include: Stand Up, The Little Green Monkey Club (Old Red Lion), Bombing People (Jermyn Street), Promised Land, Top Of The Town (Kings Head); and Roberto Calvi Is Alive & Well (Finborough), which won a Guiness Fringe Theatre Award.
He has had a playwriting attachment to the National Theatre Studio and has been the resident playwright at both the Warehouse Theatre in Croydon and Jermyn Street Theatre in Piccadilly.
Ying Tong is the first part of his “Dead Comedians” trilogy, the other two being The Bitter End (Groucho Marx/Lenny Bruce) and The Lad Himself (Tony Hancock) which will be going on a first class UK tour next year.
Fries (Spike Milligan) is from Newcastle. He began his theatre
life in Goulburn
He has appeared in many Canberra productions since 2001, working with
Free Rain, Canberra Rep, Huitker Movement Theatre, New Century. Those
productions include Black Comedy, 12 Angry Men, Things We Do For Love,
Learning Curve, Dealer’s Choice, Pass The Butler, I Never Sang For My
Father, Banana Bread. He has also had several appearances at the Street
Theatre’s Bunch of Fives, and at the Multicultural Fringe
Festival. Robert’s sanity levels are very different from Spike
Milligan’s (one could say polar opposites, but then Spike was bipolar),
so he has looked for some other point of commonality, and has easily
found it - Spike was also a staunch campaigner against muzak and other
unnecessary environmental noise.
Kennedy (Peter Sellers) joins the Rude Mechanicals from the
Commedia Del'Arte group - Troupe Dart. With Troup Dart Steven performed at the 2006 National Folk, National Multicultural and Adelaide Fringe Festivals as the tragically downtrodden, working class hero Pulcinella.
In 2005 he played the head kicking megalomaniac Inspector Truscott in Joe Orton's LOOT and has also appeared in 2 feature films and 15 short films.
Steven has an undiagnosed split personality disorder - something which
has put him in good stead to play the many characters made famous by Peter Sellers
|Robbie Matthews (Harry Secombe)
at the National Folk Festival with the Canberra Union Voices. He
has appeared in NUTS presents: 'One Night Only', and 'The Adventures of
Boy President' at the Multicultural Fringe, as well as performing in a
series of radio plays for Artsound FM. When not acting or singing, he
is the Editor in Chief of The Andromeda Spaceways
(and webmaster for Rude Mechanicals)
He feels a connection to Harry because they both enjoyed their grub...
|John Honey (Wallace Greenslade) has acted in
over 35 productions,
mainly for Canberra Repertory where he was recently in Sly Fox, Comic
Potential, Bus Stop, The Madness of George III and Gross Indecency: The
Three Trials of Oscar Wilde. John was in New Century Productions’ When
In Rome and Twelve Angry Men. He was Salieri in Free Rain’s acclaimed
production of Amadeus. He is also Treasurer of Canberra Rep.
John feels a connection with the “ever patient, dignified announcer” Wallace Greenslade as he once was a part time newsreader on Canberra television.
|Ian Hart (Director)
I started directing plays and revues in the early 1960s for UNSW Dramsoc, but since then I’ve mainly been a film and video director and producer in exotic locations. Over the past 35 years I seem to have accumulated about 60 productions shot in Australia, Europe, Russia, SE Asia and China. However, in recent times the siren song of live theatre has turned my head and I find myself back on the boards as an actor or behind the scenes as a director or multimedia designer for groups such as Hong Kong Players, American Community Theatre and Canberra Repertory. This new venture with The Rude Mechanicals is another step into the risky realm of entrepreneurial theatre where we aim to première new works and re-interpret venerable classics.
Pauletto (Costumes and ASM) has been involved with theatre on
and off since
she made her first appearance as Tweedledum in Alice
in Wonderland (Cooma Little Theatre) in 1996. Since then she
has graduated to more substantial nonsense, with roles in such plays as
A Streetcar Named Desire (The Method
Group) and Summer of the Aliens
(NUTS), and she directed Much Ado About
Nothing (Ursula College) in 2002. She also hangs
around film sets whenever she can get away with it. Luisa has a
Theatre Studies from the ANU and now spends much of her time selling
manning the bar and generally organizing the front office at the
Ying Tong marks Luisa’s debut in costume design. She would like to thank the kind gentlemen of The Rude Mechanics for having her along, and promises not to look during Steven’s nude scene.
I have served on Rep's Council for some 14 years, six of which as President (and currently Vice President). My other activities include a one off acting stint as Forman of the Jury in 'Twelve Angry Men', Production manager for various Rep shows, Front of House convenor, and, a one off Stage Manager for a series of one act plays by Christopher Durang for Rep Studio.
I am really enjoying the experience of working with a great group of people in 'YIng Tong' I am confident that our show will be a wonderful success.
Spike Milligan – his part in my downfall *
1956, a boarding school in Armidale: every Sunday a small, spotty ex-Boy Scout listens to The Goon Show after lights-out on a crystal set under the bedclothes. At recess the following day he joins a cabal of more spotty would-be Goons to reproduce the show from memory, with all the voices. Ripple dissolve to 1962 and our wannabe Bluebottle is in Sydney directing plays and revues for UNSW Dramsoc and Spike Milligan is in Australia writing Idiots Weekly for the ABC. Spike receives an invitation to the last night of the University Revue. Much to everyone’s amazement Spike and Patricia appear in the audience and then at the party afterwards. Moriarty crits the show, Jim Spriggs sings, Eccles presides over the destruction of a piano, Patricia takes Spike home… what a night. Six months later Spike is admitted to hospital in London with yet another bout of depression.
Having been touched by the sacred finger of goonery, how could I resist Roy Smiles’ funny and incisive play about Spike and The Goons. I hope you enjoy watching it as much as we enjoy bringing it to life..
* See Spike Milligan's books "Adolf Hitler: My Part in His Downfall", "Mussolini: His Part in My Downfall" and "Rommel? Gunner Who?"