The Work: Plays


1983, (10m 5w play 59 characters)


Based on the biography of CYNTHIA PAYNE by Paul Bailey. PAYNE ran 'a house of sex' in Streatham. It was characterised by its absence of seediness. She wanted to provide a happy service. It was a 'fun' house to which people came and relaxed and went off with a girl every so often. CYNTHIA PAYNE was busted but made such a good impression in court that she subsequently became a minor celebrity. Wesker's adaptation, for reasons completely incomprehensible to him, roused the wrath of Paul Bailey who vetoed the play ever being performed. Nor has it been published.


"Aggie, you're as plain as a bloody pikestaff but in bed you're mercurial, anyone ever tell you? She's here, she's there, she's every bloody where. Full of surprises! Never know where she's coming from next. Not like my first Earl's Court experience. Imagine! My Jewish dad with his brilliant Jewish son, all ready and bright enough to be a doctor but look - no legs! Still, never mind, he has a mind has this son. With philosophic bent. Reads Plato, Spinoza, Hegel, Kant - but can't get cunt! So, 'dad' I say, 'help! I'll get the degrees, you find a way to ease this tumescent, circumcised spectre I see before me, its handle towards my hand'. 'Son' he says, 'my heart is heavy'. You know how Jewish fathers are - heavy. Heavy and sad with this burden God's given them. So Dad buys a magazine, finds an address on the Earl's Court Road, manoeuvres son and wheelchair down steps, tells this overworked sexual therapist he'll call back in an hour, and leaves me there … can you imagine?"