Play-script - No.16



Title:       Making Noise Quietly: Lost


Writer:    Robert Holman


Setting:    A terraced house in Redcar, Cleveland. June 1982.


This trilogy of plays was first performed at the Bush Theatre, London, on 26 June 1986.



May Appleton  a small, plumpish woman of sixty-one.

Geoffrey Church a tall, slender man of thirty-one.




Lost is a short one-act play, which is part of a trilogy written by Robert Holman, entitled, Making Noise Quietly.

Holman wrote these three short plays to be performed as one piece. First on the bill is Being Friends, second is Lost and the third is Making Noise Quietly. The devastating effects of war connect all three pieces. Lost is set in 1982 during the Falklands war. A young naval officer, Geoffrey, arrives at the doorstep of Mrs. Appleton, a working-class mother. Geoffrey has come with news that her son, also a naval officer, has been killed in action during the Falklands war. The story takes an unexpected twist when the mother tells Geoffrey that her son turned his back on the family when he became a naval officer and they knew nothing of his life for the past five years.


My thoughts:

I came across this collection of plays whilst browsing the drama section of a well-known high street bookstore chain. I flicked through the pages until I hit upon the second play, Lost. I began reading it and quickly became enthralled. I happily stood there reading until I reached the end. I then made my way to the cash desk and purchased the collection after my brief test drive.

Shamefully, I am not at all familiar with the work of Robert Holman, even though he has been resident dramatist at the National Theatre and the Royal Shakespeare Company. I really enjoyed this short play. It has a nice pace, very moving and heart breaking when you get to the twist. This piece obviously goes hand in hand with the other two plays in the collection but I think it’s perfect on its own. Maybe it could be performed at a festival of short plays. It suits both a professional or amateur company, simply use a minimal set and you could tour it anywhere. It has a cast of two, an older lady and a young man. I would love to see a production, actually the description of the young man suits me, maybe I’ll produce it, watch this space!

I will blog about the other two plays in the trilogy at a later date.

Useful links:

Robert Holman


See the full list of my A Play A Day series here


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