||Produced by Brian
|| Ben Kingsley, Robert Powell
| A Smashing Day,
a contemporary piece where Kingsley would perform as singing narrator
(he'd written the music himself), playing guitar with Powell
accompanying on harmonica.
| This was a huge
success and had Kingsley noticed by Brian Epstein, manager of The
Beatles, then on an extreme high as the band dominated the charts
worldwide. Acting as a theatre producer, Epstein would now open A
Smashing Day at the New Arts Theatre in London, with Hywel Bennett in
the lead and Kingsley and Powell continuing in their musical roles.
After one performance John Lennon and Ringo Starr would come backstage
and urge Kingsley to change tack into a musical career. He'd regret it
forever if he didn't, they said. Epstein would offer him a deal.
It was televised in 1962, if you happen to run on a recording of it
please, I BEG you, send me a copy!!!
For the record : This reminds me the episode of The Detectives :
Strangers in Paradise in which Robert plays the harmonica on stage and
Jasper plays the guitar!
|"As he had done
with pop management, starting with one group and then moving to two,
then seeing the sky as the limit, Brian [Epstein] put on A
Smashing Day written by Alan Plater at the Arts Theater,
starring Hywel Bennett. It was the only thing he ever directed and he
only did so because the assigned director, John Fernald, was taken ill.
The play itself consisted of a couple of buskers who told a little
story between scenes as a kind of musical thread. Brian told me to go
out and find someone to play the buskers. At his suggestion, I came up
with two kids from RADA, Robert Powell and Ben Kingsley, the latter of
whom played guitar. Nobody could have guessed that many years later a
bald version of Ben would win an Oscar for Gandhi
and Robert would play Jesus in Lew Grade’s huge TV series, Jesus
From Magical Mystery Tours –
My life with the Beatles, by Tony Bramwell