This play was performed to sell out audiences at the Bedford Hotel in Tavistock over two nights. It was played between the courses of a splendid meal making it a social as well as cultural evening.

The play was part of the celebrations of the centenary of the death of Sabine Baring Gould and had been commissioned by The Edge Players, a small local group formed from The Edge.

The play, in four acts, was based on two things, the first the reminiscences of two of the Baring Gould’s children showing their father’s influence over them, Sabine and his wife Grace had 15 in total!

The second took more narrative liberties and looked at the influence Baring Gould may have had on two of his contemporary writers. These were George Bernard Shaw, in particular his play Pygmalian and later films My Fair Lady. The second was Bram Stoker and his most famous book, Dracula.

Throughout the play there were many nuggets of information about Baring Gould, members of the family and other authors. His role as a father in Victorian Devon, as the  Squarson (squire and parson) of Lewtrenchard and his place in society as a polymath together with his phenomenal output as a writer came across.

The cast were well into their roles and came across as real characters. The lead roles of Sabine and Grace brought their characters to life, in particular the ecclesiastical discussions were as if the audience were a fly on the wall. Grace’s character is complex, as she was a mill worker’s daughter trained by Baring Gould to exist in more refined society. This was a successful portrayal of a difficult role.

The two reminiscing sisters appeared as just that, as if they had known each other for all their lives, intertwining dialogue as siblings do! A special mention must be made of the younger players who took the roles of five of the Baring Gould’s children in their young years.

Bram Stoker and Dracula enabled the audience to be drawn into other realities and the other vampires gave young Jonathan Harker from the book an unpleasant time.

The Pygmalion act brought music and singing as light relief to the unpleasant behaviour of phoneticist Professor Higgins.

There were many other roles enabling a cast of over 20 to be involved. Added to this the superb costumes, make up, sound and lighting made for an interesting, and for most, enjoyable evening.

The play was written and directed by Bev Moody, produced by Roger Croxson and performed by The Edge Players at The Bedford Hotel.

Sabine Baring Gould meets Dracula
Sabine Baring Gould meets Dracula (Ray Jacobs)