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Monday, 22 May 2017


Shaking Hands
By Joe Cushnan

This play was written as a 45-minute radio drama. It is fiction, based on several facts from the author's life. A 60-year-old son tracks down his 89-year-old father to question him on why he left the family home, a wife and seven children. In the quest to find out about the 'missing years', the son finds it hard to suppress simmering anger and the father clings to hope of reconciliation. The script is adaptable for the stage and would be useful for student actors to practice their skills. 

Any drama group interested in considering the play, please contact:
Northern Irish drama groups would be ideal but I think the script has wide appeal. 

I am not looking for any fee or other financial return from amateur groups.

ISBN: 9781786101631

A BBC correspondent said this:

“Thank you so much for sending ‘Shaking Hands’, it’s a very thoughtful, emotional and intelligent script which I very much enjoyed reading.  I thought your treatment of the relationship between father and son was very interesting and viscerally drawn - you really could feel the anger and frustration and hopes and vulnerabilities of the characters as they negotiated the stages of the meeting.  Although I was secretly hoping for a happy ending, I also very much admired how you left the piece, with no resolution possible given the past, but perhaps some understanding for the characters. Unfortunately however, we have recently had a piece commissioned, which tackles the story of a daughter tackling her father about the secrets of his past, and although the two pieces are of course very different, we just felt that the subject matter was too similar at the moment and that Radio 4 would be unlikely to be looking for another piece in the same territory.”

Another BBC correspondent said this:

"I really enjoyed your play and thought it was a very moving story. I was engaged throughout and very curious to find out how it would end. Unfortunately, I'm afraid we have recently completed our current commissioning round for productions scheduled into 2019. Therefore, sadly, we won't be able to offer to help develop this script further at present."

Very nice, encouraging comments, so I think it has legs!

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