WHO WAS RC SHERRIFF?
Once you have tasted the joy of writing you can never give it up. You can kid yourself that you’ve finished, but you can’t stop new ideas from floating in. They whisper their temptations and nudge your elbow and go on enticing you until at last you give way.
R.C Sherriff (No Leading Lady, 1968)
Born in 1896, Mr Robert Cedric (RC) Sherriff, our generous benefactor, was a prolific novelist, playwright and screenwriter.
Like many of the artists, musicians and performers we support today, RC Sherriff’s love of the theatre and the arts started as a hobby. In his spare time he wrote short plays, some of which were performed at annual fundraising events for Kingston Rowing Club, where he was a member.
JOURNEY'S END: RC SHERRIFF'S MOST FAMOUS WORK
In 1928, RC Sherriff wrote a play called Journey's End, which was set in a dugout during the Great War and based on his own experiences of serving with the 9th East Surrey Regiment on the Western Front.
Set in the trenches of Saint-Quentin, it gave a realistic glimpse into the experiences of officers serving in a British army infantry company.
Through this play, Sherriff secured an agent and the play debuted in the West End during spring 1928, where it was huge hit!
Word of the play’s success spread across the nation and around the world. By the end of the year it was even being performed on Broadway and had been translated into German!
FROM STAGE TO SCREEN
The phenomenal success of Journey’s End caught the attention of the movie studios, who recruited RC Sherriff to write the script for a talking movie version of Journey’s End, which was released in 1930.
In the following years, Sherriff went on to write the screenplays for, and contribute to, many films we’ve come to regard as British and Hollywood classics, including:
Goodbye, Mr Chips
The Invisible Man
RC Sherriff (No Leading Lady)
DISCOVER MORE ABOUT RC SHERRIFF:
In total, during his lifetime RC Sherriff wrote or contributed towards:
Did you Know?
Journey’s End was also a success with Berlin theatre-goers, where it was performed by an all-German cast and was titled: The Other Side