'The Best of Friends' tells the story of three real-life literary friends, their lives and their mutual affection. Sir Sydney Cockerell, curator of the Fitzwilliam Museum at Cambridge, George Bernard Shaw, Nobel Prize winning author, and Benedictine nun, Dame Laurentia McLachlan were close friends throughout their lives. Their unlikely but enduring friendship was based originally in learned discourse, and the intellectual sparring led to lasting affection.
The story of these three remarkable figures and their affection for each other was pieced together by Hugh Whitmore from letters exchanged by the friends. His play is a masterpiece of understated wit and charm, as well as being quite heart-rending in places. With a formidable cast, this is drama of the very highest quality.
Their letters and essays have been woven into an unusual play about friendship, love of learning, and the inquiring mind s incessant search for answers to the big questions. The Islander Photo

''Roy Dotrice brings sprightly mischief to the part of Shaw... the play proclaims the nourishing merits of true, thoughtful friendship" Daily Mail

"Roy Dotrice is a delight as Shaw, capturing his love of paradox and mischief, but also finding a warmth and generous human sympathy in the man... Shaw’s wit shines throughout, but there is an unexpected spirituality in this performance too." Charles Spencer, Telegraph

"What makes this a very pleasurable evening is of course Shaw's splendid wit, with a very sprightly Roy Dotrice playing the tweed knickerbockered, vegetarian Irishman with plenty of verve and impeccable comic timing...Dotrice is wonderful as Shaw. The epigrams trip off his tongue with exactly the right amount of detached amusement. "
Lizzie Loveridge, Curtain Up

"An evening of continuous pleasure” Mail on Sunday

Authored by Hugh Whitmore
Directed by James Roose-EvansDesign by Simon Higlett
Lighting by Ben Ormerod Sound by John Leonard
Cast includes Roy Dotrice, Michael Pennington & Patricia Routledge

3 to 8 April Theatre Royal Bath (01225 448844)
10 to 15 April Milton Keynes Theatre (01908 606090)
17 to 22 April Malvern Festival Theatre (01684 892 227)
24 to 29 April Theatre Royal Brighton (01273 328 488)
1 to 6 May Yvonne Arnaud Theatre (01483 440 000)
8 to 13 May Richmond Theatre, Surrey (0870 060 6651)