Do We Do The Right Thing? by Neil Walker

DWD Tour eFlyer 23rd Sept '14

DWD Tour eFlyer 23rd Sept '14

The BeFrank Theatre is soon to begin it's UK tour with Do We Do The Right Thing?

For four and a half years the English market town of Wootton Bassett stands still as the bodies of 345 dead military personnel are repatriated through its streets...

Andy, a middle-aged man, long ago distanced from his military childhood sets out to discover why this community performed these acts of remembrance, paying respect to dead strangers in this way. His journey takes him beyondthe town and becomes one of self-discovery and reconciliation. Combining verbatim testimony and autobiographical material ‘Do We Do The Right Thing?’ explores society’s relationship to the Armed Forces, father-son relationships, acts of remembrance and armed conflicts that have shaped our lives over generations.

The play uses material about John from interviews with Pete and Linda Thornton.  Linda and Pete's words are used to tell parts of John’s story and their experience as parents. As the play is verbatim theatre, these texts are word-for-word transcriptions of the interview.  The way this is performed or presented is with the actors listening to the actual recorded interviews through earpieces but this cannot be heard by the audience. This technique is used to ensure the actors accurately convey not only what is being said but how it is said.

The same approach is used with all of the verbatim characters – a WW2 veteran, the cousin of someone who was killed in action, someone who lost a brother in the Korean war, a combat medic still serving who treated a young officer in Afghanistan who later died in hospital in the UK, a serving Major with 32 years experience in the military and residents of Wootton Bassett.

So the play uses words from the actual interviews to give a range of perspectives on loss, remembrance and the repatriations.

On Saturday 8th November, there will be an Event Afternoon at Salisbury Playhouse related to the play.  The event will take place at 2pm and there will be a performance at 2.45pm.  There will be poppy making, a poetry corner and the JTYAF will be there with copies of ‘Helmand: Diaries of Front-Line Soldiers’.


3-4th November 19.30 New Diorama Theatre, London or 020 7383 9034

6-8th November 19.45 / 14.45 Salisbury Playhouse, Salisbury or 01722 320 333

10th November 19.30 The Bike Shed, Exeter or 01392 434169

18-19th February 19.30 Old Fire Station, Oxford or 01865 305305

In addition to the UK tour, BeFrank has been invited by General John Henderson (General Officer Commanding, BFG) to tour the show to British Forces in Germany. They will also be delivering an extensive outreach and education programme to military personnel, families and civilian support staff.

On Tuesday 4th November @ 7.30 p.m. at The New Diorama Theatre, London  they will be holding a fundraising evening specifically aimed at raising funds to support the tour to British Forces Germany which takes place 15th – 22nd March 2015.  The ticket prices for that performance are £30. The evening will include a performance of the show, free programme, music, a special guest (TBA), a discussion panel and a chance to meet the cast and crew over drinks after the show. Details for this event can be found at: