Great War Theatre

Examiner of Plays' Summary:

A sad little war-time study of the false position of an English girl, married quite happily to a German mechanic employed in a London factory. Despite the pointed gossip of a typical landlady all is going well with the affectionate young couple and their child, until the day comes when the husband is dismissed from his job through no fault of his own but on account of his nationality. Till then, though an "alien" he has been in no sense an "enemy", but in his bitterness he at once becomes one: and his wife finds him about to take to Germany the compromising papers confided to him by a fellow-countryman who is already a spy. In a strong scene his wife discovers him and tries to secure, and destroy the papers, but before she can do so he is arrested and carried off for internment as an "alien enemy". The attempt to balance sympathy fairly may not prove very popular just now, but it is made without offence to patriotic feeling. Recommended for License Ernest. A. Bendall

Licensed On: 19 Mar 1917

License Number: 864



British Library Reference: LCP1917/6

British Library Classmark: Add MS 66161 DD


2 Apr 1917 New Theatre, CambridgeUnknown Licensed Performance
2 Apr 1917 New Theatre, CambridgeProfessional
Read Narrative
"The Alien Enemy Peril is dealt with in a rather novel form in the [...] playlet." "In the part of Jean, Miss Katherine Harrowby acted sympathetically throughout, without over-exaggerating a very difficult part. Mr. Ronald Adair , as Hans, gave a typical study of a German, and Mr. A.J. Poulton as Oscar acted with finish. As an excitable landlady Miss Ada Gasgoigne did well and Mr. John Mason made a realistic policeman". "The Era", 11 April 1917.
11 Apr 1917 Alexandra Theatre, Stoke NewingtonProfessional
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"Originally produced at the New Theatre, Cambridge, this sketch is obviously intended as a warning against permitting the uninterned alien to remain in our midst, and it should find favour among popular audiences." "There is excellent material in the sketch, which will go much better when played a few more times." "Miss Katherine Harrowby is excellent as the patriotic wife and Mr. A. E. Mayne is very successful in the difficult portrayal of Hans Hanger. The Oscar Wech of Mr. Beresford [?] is defty handled, whilst a pleasant relief is provided by Mrs. Henry Gasgoigne as the landlady, Mrs Higgins; and the detective displayed by Mr. John Mason. The piece was excellently received by an appreciative audience." "The Era", 25 April 1917.
5 Jun 1917 Queen's Theatre, Poplar, LondonProfessional
Read Narrative
'A sketched entitled "The Enemy", form the pen of J.A.R. Wylie, is being played at the Queen's, Poplar, this week by Katherine Harrowby's company. It deals with the enemy alien peril." "The Stage", 7 June 1917. I.A.R. Wylie incorrectly listed in "The Stage" as "J.A.R. Wylie"