A Better Boy

A Titanic Monologue

John Wilson Foster

It is 1917. William J Pirrie, Chairman of Harland & Wolff, has agreed to an interview in England about his nephew Tommie Andrews – Thomas Andrews, chief designer of RMS Titanic, a ship Tommie stayed on until the end and whose name Pirrie is loath to speak.

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It is 1917. William J Pirrie, Chairman of Harland & Wolff, has agreed to an interview in England about his nephew Tommie Andrews – Thomas Andrews, chief designer of RMS Titanic, a ship Tommie stayed on until the end and whose name Pirrie is loath to speak.

Five years after the disaster, Pirrie recalls Tommie’s boyhood, his beginnings as an apprentice aged sixteen at Harland & Wolff, the world’s greatest shipyard. Pirrie re-lives the feverish inquires after the sinking, the scorching sermons, the excited finger-pointing, and Tommie’s last moments aboard the stricken liner.

But Pirrie, the overlooked shipping genius, has another agenda, for he wishes to combat the heated defeatism and accusing anger that greeted the disaster. Just as Pirrie was, and is, the neglected cast-member of the Titanic tragedy, so his version of events is in conflict with the received notions and judgements still in place a century after.

Yet Pirrie’s manifesto of success – a late Victorian philosophy for the 20th-century Machine Age – is tempered and threatened by his rediscovery of grief and loss.

The audience leaves . . . with a new and vivid sense of the passion and conviction that drove William J. Pirrie, Thomas Andrews and their colleagues to build so many ships of the scale and ambition of the Titanic.
TONY MACAULAY, CULTURE NORTHERN IRELAND

Beautifully written, frank, uncompromising and fascinating…
JANE COYLE, IRISH THEATRE MAGAZINE

A Better Boy is a lovingly crafted and condensed retelling of the Titanic tragedy from a refreshingly different angle. It addresses issues of class, nationality, politics, art, grief and much more without seeming bloated or awkward.
ALAN SIMPSON, NI THEATRE

More details can be found via the author website: http://johnwilsonfoster.squarespace.com/abetterboy#a-better-boy

Details

Format: Paperback / Softback

ISBN / EAN: 9780993560712

Published On: 10 November, 2017

Page Count: 50

Publisher: Belcouver Press

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