Ruth Leon recommends – Shaw Shorts

Ruth Leon recommends – Shaw Shorts


norman lebrecht

June 02, 2021

Shaw Shorts – Orange Tree Theatre
Click here for tickets £15.00

June 3-4 livestream online

The Orange Tree Theatre is reopening live with these two short Shaw plays but if you can’t get to Richmond, in South West London, they will be streamed online for two performances.
How He Lied to Her Husband and Overruled – a double bill of Bernard Shaw’s short plays directed by Artistic Director Paul Miller.
In How He Lied to Her Husband, Aurora is concerned about what has happened to the poems written for her by her admirer, the impetuous Henry, and fears they may get into the hands of husband Teddy. Henry suggests they confess the truth and go to the theatre as planned… to see Bernard Shaw’s Candida Then Henry arrives home.

Overruled sees two strangers fall in love at sea. Both married, they decide they must part, but then are surprised to find their spouses at a hotel together. They’ve fallen for each other too. Do they stay together or swap?

Read more here


  • Edgar Self says:

    Anything Shaw wrote, including these playlets and by-plays, is worth knowing, even his muisic criticism and “The Perfect Wagnerite”.

    For many years a group called Shaw Chicago gave publicv readings of all his plays on various stages here: Arms and the Man, Mesalliance, Pygmalion, Man and Superman with Don Juan in Hell, The Doctor’s Dilemma, The Devil’s Disciple, Mrs. Warren’s Profession, Major Barbara, John Bull’s Other Island, In Good King Charles’s Golden Days, The Apple Cart, Saint Joan, The Millionairess, Back to Methuselah, &tc, many of them known also as films.

  • Kenneth Griffin says:

    Regrettably, all performances are now cancelled for the rest of this week (at least), from last night (Wed 2 June) through to Sat (5 Jun), because one member of cast is self-isolating, having been alerted of possible Covid contact. The Orange Tree hopes it will be possible to reschedule the two livestreams planned for 3 and 4 June.

    I saw these two Shaw Shorts last week, and they are the closest that live theatre gets to chamber music, with the duets, a trio and a quartet performed in the round in the intimacy of the Orange Tree.

  • Edgar Self says:

    With performances suspended, there is a glimmer of light. Shaw’s plays are eminently readable, unusually so. He took care to make them so, with detailed stage directions.

  • Edgar Self says:

    I forgot the unforgettable Caesar and Cleopatra and the great film of it with Claude Raines, Vivian Leigh, and young Stewart Grainger. As the Alexandria library is afire, Caesar is besieged, and Cleopatra escapes to safety rolled up in a rug, a captain enters. “You are lost, Caesar, for I have betrayed you.” Caesar, calmly, “You cannot have betrayed me, Rufio, for I never trusted yoi.”