Born: October 19, 1902. Died: September 28, 1952.
A father to six daughters, my grandfather spent much of World War II employed as a chef in the RAF, stationed away from home and family in Orfordness, Suffolk, United Kingdom. Sadly, he passed away before I was born at the age of just 49 from emphysema.
His talent for playwriting wasn’t lost on the BBC whom broadcast his plays on the wireless. I can recall my late mother telling me of the times he would proudly call his daughters to the sitting room to listen to his plays being read over the airwaves.
I have recently come across three comedy sketches written by my grandfather that were performed at the Royal Air Force Variety Show by the Orfordnesters. The first of the three sketches entitled Magic Carpet was performed by the compere for the evening at Alford Town Hall, Suffolk on 5th November, 1941. The first spoken line of Magic Carpet cleverly makes a connection to the previous sketch in the programme entitled The Dictator, giving a seamless transition from one sketch to the next. Pitters Magic Carpet can be seen handwritten on the printed copy of the evening’s programme which suggests it was perhaps a late addition. Unfortunately, the sketch relating to the second handwritten entry entitled Pitters Magic Box is missing.
Written by Neville Rhodes Pitter
ARTISTE enters stage, backing from wings, saying. . .
Alright! Alright! Alright! You can’t frighten me, you and your leaders and dictators.
(Continued talking to self, but facing audience.)
That’s how they treat you here. I simply asked for me wages and the manager gave me this carpet and said ‘Oy, you, take this and beat it’, so I beat it out here.
(Suddenly realizing the audience.)
Hello? What you doing here? You had a row with the manager, too?
The remaining two sketches written by my grandfather can be enjoyed by selecting the following links: