The photo depicts Jill’s uncle, a captain in the Royal Artillery, marrying a nurse near enemy lines in Cassino, Italy, 1944.
“The image was so poignant, it made we want to know more,” Jill explains. “My research journey took me to the Allied cemetery at Cassino, where I found my uncle’s grave. He died aged just 23, two days after his wedding. It was here that the heart of an old soldier’s story began to beat, and “Monte Cassino Morning” was born. The play is an exploration of my uncle’s romance during the Italian Campaign, set just before the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Monte Cassino. It features a veteran soldier, finally confronting the past and finding the only road home leads back to the battlefield.”
Nicola Haydn, Artistic Director of Otherplace Productions, was quick to invite the show to premiere at The Pit at The Basement, one of the company’s venues in Brighton. “It’s a gripping and poignant story with a fresh take on wartime subject matter,” she said.
The show stars former RSC actor, David Fielder, and West End performer Nicky Croydon-Bond and is directed by Chris Bond (writer/director of ‘Sweeney Todd’ and 100 other shows). Design is by Ellen Cairns. It opens in Brighton Fringe on May 1st and runs until May 5th (6.30 pm and 7.30 pm on the last night). Tickets are £10/£8.50 concessions. More information online at Otherplace Productions, Brighton Fringe, or in person at the Fringe ticket office, One Stop Travel, North Street, Brighton) and on www.jillhucklesbyproductions.co.uk.