Ayckbourn’s Drowning On Dry Land revived at New Wimbledon Studio

Drowning on Dry Land, Alan Ayckbourn’s coruscatingly acidic and funny play, is an ode to failure, or rather to the English fascination with failure.

It tells the story of Charlie Conrad – a man who seemingly has everything: fame, fortune and a legion of faithful fans. His talent ? He has no talent.

Charlie is famous for doing nothing and failing in everything he attempts. His persistent non-achievement has acquired him a cult celebrity status.

Resented by his trophy wife, who gave up her career for him, Charlie’s perfect world comes crashing down around him when an investigative journalist and an amorous clown prove how fickle fame can be.

Actor Martin Rossen, currently starring in An Inspector Calls, in the West End, has formed Bournyack Theatre Company to stage the black comedy, which plays at the New Wimbledon Studio Theatre next month.

No stranger to Alan Ayckbourn, he has had lead roles in two Ayckbourn plays – Chandler Tate in Comic Potential and Vic Parkes in Man of the Moment.

Martin said: “My decision to create a theatre company, and name it after the great writer, was somehow, inevitable and thus, Bournyack Theatre Company was born.

“Alan suffered a stroke in 2006 and his recovery, and continual writing, as well as directing, is inspirational to say the least. I thought: ‘What better way to give something back, than to help spread the word of the amazing work of the Stroke Association?’

“They tirelessly help and support those who are affected by strokes”.

The Stroke Association is now an affiliate to Bournyack Theatre Co. “I am delighted that they accepted”.

Bournyack’s mission statement is to bring plays by well-known writers, as well as new writers’ work, to audiences in London and further afield.

“Theatre should be many things, but essentially, an inspiring experience. We want to produce plays that make audiences laugh, cry and ultimately think” he added.

Blair Robertson stars as Charlie. He is joined by Janine Pardo, Malcolm Jeffries, Philip Gill, Louise Devlin, Olivia Busby, John Craggs, Frida Strom and Ellie Ward.

Drowning On Dry Land, written in 2004, and directed by Paul Tate, plays at the New Wimbledon Studio from April 18- 23.

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