Troubador The Write Escape

Released: 28/08/2021

ISBN: 9781800463820

eISBN: 9781800469648

Format: Paperback/eBook

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The Write Escape

How One Actor Coped with Covid


What were you doing when the lights went out on 16th March 2020? John Griffiths was about to step out on stage at the Waterside, Aylesbury, in The Mousetrap by Agatha Christie. But, with less than an hour to curtain up, the curtain fell. Who dunnit? Why, Covid, of course. The Write Escape takes up the story from there… 

Early in the first Lockdown John had domestic chores to distract him, but they couldn’t fill the artistic hole the loss of performing had left behind. Thus John decided to start each morning with three Ps – nothing to do with a weak bladder. Every day kicked off with a prayer, a poem and a psalm. All this reading got the creative juices going, and he began to write a daily blog. When several people said he should put these pieces in a book, he succumbed to the flattery and decided it was a good idea. This is the result. 

The book spans the Ides of March to the Ides of September, and covers a variety of subjects and styles. It includes epigrams, limericks, haikus, obituaries, anecdotes, recipes and sports reports. We meet, among others, Her Majesty the Queen, Florence Nightingale, Nelson Mandela, Louis Pasteur, Ben Stokes, Kenny Dalglish; and writers including Shakespeare, Byron, Oscar Wilde, Ogden Nash, Dylan Thomas, Wordsworth, Masefield, Betjeman and Duffy; and mark schooldays, holidays, festivals, anniversaries, weddings and, sadly, funerals. But the overall tone is one of hope, and faith in the human spirit to adapt, to persevere and survive.

'Open Book' in Richmond have agreed to host a book launch when a date is agreed.

Not just for Lockdown, but for Life!

This book is packed. A daily pot-pourri of musings, anecdotes, poetry and gardening tips; with tried and tested, delicious, handed-down recipes that bring families together. It’s enriching. It has filled the big cultural gap I have felt in these uncertain times. So much energy. So much to explore. For me, John writes with modesty, great humour, and the wit of an accomplished raconteur from the ‘Land of our Fathers’.

Please write the sequel (and give us a larger slice of Bara Brith!)

by Ingrid Middleton

John Griffiths

John Griffiths - original surname, Francis - was born, raised and educated in Swansea. After university and teacher training, he moved to London in 1970 and taught English and Drama in a couple of Ealing schools before becoming a professional actor in 1978.

Since then he has toured over a dozen African countries in Shakespeare productions for the British Council; played in Canada twice: in Oliver! and The Boyfriend ; done five seasons in Sweden; performed all over Europe and the UK; worked extensively in Rep, in film, on TV and radio; made several original cast recordings; spent two years as a National Theatre player; appeared in seven West End shows; played seasons at The Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park, Sadler's Wells, The Orange Tree and The Old Vic; taken two shows to the Edinburgh Fringe, including his adaptation of The Gospel according to John, a piece for solo performer. This production also toured cathedrals, churches and theatres as a Millennium project.

Previous writing experience:

Two one-man shows: Forty Years Gone; Chapel, Chums and Chips; and a three-hander, A Cock-and-Bull story.

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