Pack of Lies
Pack of Lies is a 1983 play by English writer Hugh Whitemore. Based on a true story, the plot centres on Bob and Barbara Jackson (in real life Bill and Ruth Search) and their teenage daughter Julie (in real life Gay Search, later a television reporter and newspaper journalist in the UK.) The Jacksons are friendly with their neighbours, Peter and Helen Kroger, until the couple is arrested and charged with espionage in 1961. It is revealed the Krogers actually are Morris and Lona Cohen, who during the 1950s and 60s worked with fellow spy Gordon Lonsdale photographing and encoding as microdots various pieces of material which they then sent to their colleagues in Russia, as part of a Soviet espionage network known as the Portland Spy Ring that had penetrated Britain's Royal Navy.
The original West End production, starring Judi Dench and her husband, Michael Williams, as the Jacksons, opened on October 26, 1983 at the Lyric Theatre, where it ran for nearly a year. Dench won the Laurence Olivier Award as Best Actress for her performance.
Performance history in South Africa
1985: Produced by the The Company in association with the Company of Four, presented at the Market Theatre and the Baxter Theatre. Directed by Leonard Schach. Set design by Anthony Farmer. Lighting design by Mannie Manim. Featuring Erica Rogers as Barbara, Ron Smerczak as Bob, Joanna Weinberg as Julie, John Whiteley as Stewart, Helen Jessop as Helen, Michael Brunner as Peter, Louise Saint Claire as Thelma, Natalie Gamsu as Sally.
Pack of Lies programme notes - 1985.
Barrow, Brian & Williams-Short, Yvonne (eds.). 1988. Theatre Alive! The Baxter Story 1977-1987.
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