A new play by Roy Clarke, award-winning writer of the popular BBC series, Last of the Summer Wine. Clarke wrote the play to mark the tercentenary of Wesley’s birth.
The play is based upon actual events in Wesley’s life and is a witty and moving account of this complex man whose challenging and sometimes abrasive personality often led him into conflict with the legal and clerical authorities of his day.
Director, Karen Crow said,
“Roy Clarke has produced a fascinating and surprising study of the life and times of John Wesley. Most people will have heard of Wesley as the founder of world Methodism, but this play shows the real man and the personal difficulties he faced everyday rather than the sanitised and rather ‘saintly’ portrait that often appears in the biographies. Of course, as a comedy writer, Clarke has pulled out the stops and found much humour even in the darkest scenes. The inhabitants of Clarke’s drama are as varied and colourful as an eighteenth century cartoon. This really is a fitting testament to a remarkable man.”
The music and choral singing, specially arranged by Musical Director Helen Mason and includes Lincolnshire folk tunes and hymns by John Wesley and his brother Charles. Early musician, Richard Still added to the atmosphere with his authentic period instruments.
Performances of Mister Wesley took place on July 25th and 26th at Southwell Minster as well as August 7th, 8th, and 9th 2003 at Lincoln Cathedral.