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Shirley Holmes and the Body in B Ward

Written by Steve Hennessy
Directed by Alison Comley

26 Apr 2006 to 29 Apr 2006
Hope Centre, Bristol

04 May 2006 to 06 May 2006
The Gate Arts Centre, Cardiff

production image

Wellworld plc Hospital has merged with a giant pharmaceutical company and a patient has disappeared. Boundaries at the hospital are disappearing too - between staff and patient, reality and fantasy, real life and theatre. When private eye Shirley Holmes is invited in to crack the case she runs into a very different kind of Murder Mystery Weekend, a gallery of fragile, funny and fabulous characters, and a lot more trouble than she could ever have expected . .

This was Stepping Out's nineteenth production, their third collaboration with Chrysalis Theatre and their first with newly formed Welsh company Progress Cymru. Over four nights in Bristol, we achieved our highest ever Hope Centre audiences for this production and then took it to a new venue in a new city. The Gate Arts Centre in Cardiff proved a very successful venue for the Stepping Out formula and audiences were extremely enthusiastic about the production. Audience feedback overall for this production was the best ever for a large scale play and we achieved our best overall audience figure, beating the record set in the previous year by 'Rasputin'.

A video / DVD of this production in a special souvenir case is available from Stepping Out Theatre Company priced at £10 (includes package and posting).

'Shirley Holmes and the Body in B Ward' is dedicated to Rosie Moreno-Parra.

Show photos


Gill Amphlett - Chorus
John De Barham - Maxi / Doctor Leech
Mike A'Bear - Chorus
Ernie Bell - Keef
Pameli Benham - Princess Maria
Linda Blompied - Nurse Nicole Kidman
Alex Boyt - Professor Coleridge
Marie Buchannon - Nurse Maggie Smith
Liz Clarke - Gaby the Goth
T. J. Davies - Mini / Spin Doctor
Cheryl Douglas - Arab Dancer
Tracey Evans - Arab Dancer
Jayne Fairweather - Arab Dancer
Simon Hawkins - Chorus
Steve Hennessy - Chorus Leader
Ross Hughes - Nurse Frisk
Simon Jory - Chorus
Lottie Lowri - Chorus / Spin Doctor
Ros Liddiard - Nurse Judy Dench
Rachel Marsh - Samantha Becket
Ann O'Reilly - Chorus
Chris Ormsby - Chorus
Francis Page - Gonga Din
Jan Prior - Sally
Dee Sadler - Miss Gnomer
Lis Sah Stuart - Shirley Holmes
Anilee Taylor - Spin Doctor
Ann Wilson - Chorus
Simon Winkler - The Colonel


Director - Alison Comley
Set Design and Build - Ann Stiddard / Cheryl Douglas
Costumes - Penn O'Gara / Pia Pispa
Graphic Design - Ann Stiddard
Lighting Design - Tim Bartlett
Technician - Martin Lee
Prompt / Stage Management - Charlotte Stevens
Original Music - Mind Your Music / Richard Banbury / Ernie Bell
Arab Dance Choreography - Nurabia / Karine Butchart
Photography - Ian Wilmot
Produced by Alison Comley / Steve Hennessy / Simon Winkler
Sound Mastering - Hoxa Sound
Script Development - David Carter

Special Thanks to; Mind Your Music, Drastic Productions, Nurabia


" . . felt a sense of pride for all those involved in this production. In a society in danger of overdosing on psychiatry it was interesting to observe a performance piece created by those who have experienced first hand the varying extremes of mental health."
 Amy Stackhouse,

"Ably held together by director Alison Comley, this latest show is both funny and provocative, and succeeds in breaking the taboo of laughing at mental health issues, thereby appealing directly to Stepping Out's core audience."
 Rina Vergano, Venue Magazine

" . . Stepping Out are clearly worth supporting. It is always refreshing to see Bristol based writers, actors and directors showcasing such pioneering work."
 Theresa Roche,


Stepping Out Theatre
13 Creedwell Orchard

Registered Charity (CIO) 1179310 (since July 2018), Formerly Charity 1117912 (since February 2007)

m. 07896 684097

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