Three Days In May

This show has now closed, click here for a listing of current and future London shows

Previewed 31 October 2011 - opened 2 November 2011 - closed 3 March 2012 at the Trafalgar Studios in London.

Ben Brown's new play Three Days in May in London starring Warren Clarke and directed by Alan Strachan.

May 1940... Downing Street... Three days that will change the course of history... Forever - Having urgently assembled the British war cabinet, the new Prime Minister is suddenly confronted with an intense game of political chess as he tries to persuade peace treaty supporters, including Neville Chamberlain, that Britain must not give in. Divided on whether to negotiate terms through Mussolini or escalate the battle against fascism alone, one man has to make a monumental decision which will shape the future of the free world...

Ben Brown's political thriller takes us behind the doors of Number 10 Downing Street during three of the most pivotal days in British history when, extraordinarily, giving in to Hitler was considered by some to be a viable option.

Three Days in May in London stars Warren Clarke as 'Winston Churchill' along with Robert Demeger as 'Neville Chamberlain' and Jeremy Clyde as 'Lord Halifax'. The production, which comes into London's West End following a two month regional tour, is directed by Alan Strachen with designs by Gary McCann, lighting by Mark Howett and sound by Martin Hodgson. Jeremy Clyde's West End credits include Pump Boys and Dinettes.

"Did Churchill have a wobble moment in 1940 when he briefly considered suing Hitler for peace via Mussolini? And, if he did, wouldn't it be sensible for any leader to consider all the options before committing Britain to fighting on alone and against the odds?... Using the clumsy device of a narrator, Brown focuses on three meetings of the war cabinet... Warren Clarke's jowly prime minister is an ebullient bruiser who twists Chamberlain's arm and finally outwits Halifax. Churchill's supposed dithering may well have been purely tactical. Of course, we know now that he was right, but a more interesting play would make one consider whether Halifax had a point." The Sunday Times

"Ben Brown's Three Days In May is set during the dark chapter in 1940 when the War Cabinet considered suing for a negotiated peace with Hitler, with Mussolini as mediator. At the end of the play, Winston Churchill claims such discussions never happened. But then, as he also says: 'History will be kind to me for I intend to write it.' He did and it probably was... The first half is a dry history lesson with too little tension between the men. It is rescued from dreariness by Warren Clarke's excellent performance as Churchill. He has the slurring, whisky-and-cigar-marinated bulldog voice to a tee, complete with his pronunciation of Nazi as 'narzsee'... The second half takes off when Robert Demeger's dejected Chamberlain keeps us all waiting for his decision over what Britain should do. However, we're not exactly on tenterhooks as we know the outcome. It's only when Churchill, in the Commons, does his rabble-rousing stuff - 'Better to perish than to live as slaves' - that one's blood begins to flow. Until then, dramatic sluggishness rules for too long." The Mail on Sunday

Three Days in May in London at the Trafalgar Studios 1 previewed from 31 October 2011, opened on 2 November 2011 and closed on 3 March 2012.