Life of troubled poet to be played on stage

Richard Sandells & Louise Mai Newberry in The Long Life and Great Good Fortune of John Clare - sprin

Richard Sandells & Louise Mai Newberry in The Long Life and Great Good Fortune of John Clare - spring tour by Eastern Angles - Credit: Archant

The facts and myths about the life of a 19th century English peasant poet will be brought to life on stage at Sheringham.

Created by the Eastern Angles touring company, The Long Life and Great Good Fortune of John Clare will be performed at Sheringham Little Theatre on Thursday, March 21 at 7.30pm.

It will tell the story of a man who believes he is the poet John Clare, who lived near Peterborough before his death in 1864.

He is considered by many to be among the most important 19th century poets and was known for his celebration of the English countryside and his lamentation of its disruption.

John Clare is viewed by some as an eco-warrior of his time who was unfairly locked up for his visions.


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The poet was committed to the Northampton General Lunatic Asylum, now St Andrew's Hospital, in 1841 where he stayed until his death.

The main character of the play, written by Tony Ramsay, is a patient of a psychiatrist called Melody.

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Melody's partner, a character called Rafe, is fixated on his own version of the Clare legend.

During the play all three characters search for the real story behind the poet, which reveals startling truths about themselves.

The play will be performed across 42 different venues, including the Granary Theatre in Wells and Hindolveston Village Hall.

Ring 01263 822347 or visit www.sheringhamlittletheatre.com.

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