Congratulations! It’s the 20th episode!!

Picturing the Past
A brush with the past

What a beautiful, poetic, yet ultimately sad story of commercial success but unfulfilled, suppressed creativity. It takes place in two timescales – nowadays when Amy and Ruth attend an exhibition of paintings by landscape artist Hugo Westfield who died in 1947, aged just 59. The history of the artist is described in the Audioguide. But we also have flashbacks to Hugo and Imogen in 1914, becoming friends and writing to each other until the end of the war, when they marry, in 1919.

Hugo is quite the rebel, with his own style of painting, and once the war is over, he draws graphic pictures of wounded soldiers in devastating circumstances to show the world what war was really like. Imogen, however, says no-one wants to see such disturbing images and persuades Hugo that people want pretty pictures that ‘increase human happiness.’

I was so moved by this story. I understand that Imogen needs Hugo to sell commercial paintings to support his family, but I was also saddened by her lack of understanding. I loved this play.

Written by Barbara Jennings
Directed by Emmeline Braefield

Starring
Jackson Pentland as the Audioguide
Emmeline Braefield as Amy
Chloe Wade as Ruth and Sylvia Westfield
Jasmine Raymond as Imogen Westfield
and Gareth Turkington as Hugo Westfield

Produced by Cat on a Piano Productions

Music:
The Thunderer March by the US Marine Band
English Country Garden bt Aaron Kenny
The Two Seasons by Dan Bodan
Sweetly My Heart by Asher Fulero
Remembering Her by Esther Abrami
In my Dreams by Esther Abrami

The Theatrephonic Theme tune was composed by Jackson Pentland
Performed by
Jackson Pentland
Mollie Fyfe Taylor
Emmeline Braefield

Cat on a Piano Productions produce and edit feature films, sketches and radio plays.

Their latest project is called @Theatrephonic, a podcast of standalone radio plays and short stories performed by professional actors. You can catch Theatrephonic on Spotify and other platforms.

And if you really enjoyed Picturing the Past, listen to Theatrephonic’s other plays and short stories and consider becoming a patron by clicking here…

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