Dr Edmund Somers

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(17**-18**) Director of the Cape Town military hospital and founder of the Thespian Society. He and his wife, Mrs Somers, were intensely interested in theatricals and had discovered the Barracks Theatre. She wrote a number of prologues and speeches for the performances, while he apparently directed and performed in them, reading the prologues and playing inter alia Lady Pentweazel in Taste, Falstaff in Henry IV. Between 1799 and 1802 he became very much part of Sir George Yonge's ideas for theatre in the colony and served on the committee for the African Theatre. Indeed, Lady Anne Barnard suggests that the whole idea of the African Theatre derives from Sir George's enjoyment of Dr Somers's production of what she called Teasle ( actually it was Taste) by Foote, in the Hospital.

Bosman (1928 p 107) seems to suggest that he is possibly the same as the Edmund Summers who is listed as one of the members of the Theatre Commission appointed by Sir George Yonge.

He returned to England in 1802.


Bosman, 1928: p 61-67, 107

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