The Diary of Anne Frank (1986)

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Poster by Poster Designer

by Frances Goodrich & Albert Hackett

Directed by Tina Massey

Performances: Sun 2nd – Sat 8th February 1986, Bell Theatre


Set in the top floor of a warehouse in Amsterdam at various times from July 1942 to November 1945.




Keeping Faith With The Past

"The Diary of Anne Frank" .....Tina Massey's production has great detail going for it. Most of today's audiences are too young to have experienced the war, and even the rest have had no actual experience of living in occupied territory, let alone belonging to the hunted Jewish minority.

Let us, then, salute Tina Massey and the cast for conveying with such fidelity to detail what it must have been like for those eight fugitives holed up above a warehouse in Amsterdam, living each day for two years in constant fear of exposure and arrest.

But for the diary of the remarkable teenager Anne Frank we would never have known the truth. The point is, will we remember the lesson?

Sian Richardson gives a performance of poise and great sensitivity as Anne. And in the drama being played around her young life, Terry Neale ia a pillar of strength as her father, the natural leader of the group.

The production is strongest at moments of tension and crisis. Quarrels flare up, and the minute details of everyday existence become absurdly exaggerated.

Brian Scoltock and Carol Murrell play the edgy and selfish Van Daans, and Geoff Munday is their son Peter, whose affection for Anne at last breaks through the shell of his shyness.

Delia Taitt plays Mrs Frank with instinctive sympathy and understanding, and Gillian Holmes impresses in the rather thankless role of her elder sister Margot, so much less interesting than Anne herself but a personality in her own right nevertheless.

Bernard Witt, too, earns an accolade for his portrayal of the unpleasant Mr Dussel, completing the band of reluctant residents. From the world outside, Ken Lucas and Josephine Hussey exemplify the spirit of sacrifice.

Donald Madgwick, from The Croydon Advertiser, reprinted in SCENE with permission of the editor.

Also, from the Streatham Guardian Series, Thurs Jan 20th, listing

"The Diary of Anne Frank, Courageous and poignant tale of a Jewish girl living under Nazi rule at South London Theatre Centre...."

Reprinted in SCENE with the comment "Courtesy of the Kultural Kommittee, presumably. S.L.T.Cieg Heil!


Reminiscences and Anecdotes

Special thanks were given in the programme to New Regency Ltd. for supply of timber and Intercity Scaffolding Co Ltd for supply of scaffolding.

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See Also

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