‘Little Lily Harley’ is about Charlie Chaplin’s childhood in Lambeth. With a drunken but charismatic actor father who was rarely around & a beautiful young actress mother who had three children by different fathers, he had to learn along-side his big brother Sydney how to survive a very precarious existence. Sometimes cared for by other people, sometimes in a disciplinarian school for orphans & destitute children, sometimes separated from Sydney & sometimes living on the street (as a child!), he nevertheless managed to triumph over all this to become arguably the greatest film actor ever.
Hannah Chaplin, his mother (stage name ‘Little Lily Harley’ – & the play is as much about her), taught Charlie how to go, as we call it, ‘though the little door’ into his imagination. Here he could dream & be anything, rehearse the characters he met, especially their walks, & escape from his pain. She taught him this especially when she had to go away, sometimes into the workhouse & sometimes into mental institutions as she lost grip of reality, so that he didn’t miss her. By aged five when she had a memory lapse on stage at the Aldershot barracks in the canteen, he took over & won the audience back.
Catch the tour dates here
Opening this weekend: the fantastic PUSHPINDER CHANI in Pilot Theatre’s RUN REBEL opens Saturday 25th February […]
Following on from it’s successful Autumn and Winter tours, the fantastic KARYN CLAYDON can be […]
Wishing a fantastic opening night on tour to JOYCE BRANAGH in LADIES THAT DIG opening […]
We’re thrilled to have the marvellous ALEX PHELPS playing Phileas Fogg in Tilted Wig’s AROUND […]
We’re excited to have the wonderful HANNAH ELLIS RYAN playing Nora in Elysium Theatre’s A […]
We’re delighted to have the fantastic HAYLEY DOHERTY opening in A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM for […]
Opening tonight: the fantastic TILLY SUTCLIFFE in Box of Tricks Theatre’s THE LAST QUIZ NIGHT […]
We’re delighted to have the superb EMMA MATTHEWS back on tour with Birmingham Stage on […]
Opening night for the brilliant ALEX PHELPS in WHEN DARKNESS FALLS at the Park Theatre, […]
The superb LUCY TUCK opens today in a brilliant new show for theatre-goers 4 years […]