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Five Finger Exercise

Five Finger Exercise
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Author: Peter Shaffer
Publisher: Samuel French
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 91
Pub. Date: 1958
ISBN-10: 0573619298
ISBN-13: 9780573619298
Cast Size: 2 women, 3 men

About the Play:

Five Finger Exercise is a full-length drama by Peter Shaffer. The first stage success from the author of Equus and Amadeus, this taut family drama centers on a young German student who, coming to England to tutor the daughter of well-to-do family is drawn into the various individual dramas of these fractured, isolated people.

Five Finger Exercise is an autobiographical piece that focuses on the prosperous, unstable Harrington family, who are spending a holiday together in their cottage in Suffolk, England. Walter, a sensitive young German, has been engaged as tutor to Pamela Harrington. He has fled to England from a Nazi father hoping to find a new home and nationality. His stay in the Harrington family begins propitiously, but the Harringtons are a desperately unhappy family. As Clive says, 'This isn't a family. It's a tribe of wild cannibals'. It takes a near tragedy to shock them into an awareness of their cruelty to each other.

Five Finger Exercise premiered in 1958 at the Comedy Theatre in London's West End under the direction of John Gielgud, won the Evening Standard Drama Award and established Peter Shaffer's reputation as a playwright. It opened on Broadway at the Music Box Theatre in in 1959 and won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award. Since then the play has been produced widely at colleges and community theatres.

Cast: 2 women, 3 men

What people say:

"A powerful and absorbing drama." — New York Post

About the Playwright:

Sir Peter Levin Shaffer, CBE (1926-2016) was an English playwright and screenwriter. He is familiar to North American audiences as the author of Amadeus and Equus, two of the most successful plays of the postwar era, and of a string of other award-winning plays, several of which have been turned into films.

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