THE delightful comedy Heroes, adapted by Tom Stoppard from Gerald Sibleyras’ original play, is set on the small rear terrace of a home for veterans in rural France, where three old men meet every day.
Phillipe has a piece of shrapnel lodged in his head, and regularly passes out. Gustave, a former officer, has all the entitlement and braggadocio of his class, but is terrified to leave the house where he lives. Henri has an eye for the girls and a clearer view of reality that his brothers-in-arms. Their plans are brave and far reaching, but they will never accomplish them.
Simon Blacksell has directed the play for the Frome Drama Club production for the annual town festival, on at the Assembly Rooms until 11th July with two additional performances at Great Chalfield Manor.
His three talented actors, Andrew Butterworth as the loveable Phillipe, Richard Thomas as the handsome Gustave and David Gatliffe as a preciously different Henri from Richard Griffiths’ original, brought pathos and gusto to the veterans, each with his own treasured (if unreliable) memories. They are three old men who, in “outside” life, would never have become friends, but who have reached an accommodation of need that will carry them through their final days.
See the production if you can.