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Betty & Joan at Frinton Summer Theatre

A piece of Hollywood is coming to Frinton. BAFTA-nominated actress Greta Scacchi revives her role as Bette Davis in Anton Burge’s sizzling catfight of a play, Bette & Joan. Taking on the role of Joan Crawford is Felicity Dean who holds an equally impressive CV from the Royal Shakespeare Company to Hollywood.

Appearing at McGrigor Hall in Frinton from 8th to 12th August, Bette & Joan is one of six performances making up the McGrigor Hall season as part of the Frinton Summer Theatre festival of the arts.  

The incredible story of two Grand Dames of Hollywood and their intense rivalry was made famous by the 2017 mini-series, Feud: Bette & Joan.

In 1962, a relatively low-budget psychological thriller was released in the United States starring two well-known actresses who were in need of a career boost, Joan Crawford and Bette Davis. The movie, Whatever Happened to Baby Jane, was critically acclaimed, became an enormous hit at the box office and is still considered a cult classic.

Despite this success, it wasn’t the most relaxed of shoots. The well-known rivalry between these two iconic actresses spilled over onto the set and each day was filled with problems exacerbated by their dislike of each other.

Anton Burge has turned this clash of Hollywood egos into a wonderful witty, wise-cracking and comically acerbic exploration of the lives and loves of these two extraordinary actors.

Set in individual dressing rooms, the play charts the machinations and sometimes ludicrous lengths both Bette and Joan were prepared to go to in order to undermine each other. Expect an evening of bittersweet comedy with dazzling one-liners as these two cinema titans let rip.

Frinton Summer Theatre’s artistic director, Clive Brill, said: “We are delighted to welcome Greta Scacchi and Felicity Dean to Frinton Summer Theatre to perform this iconic play. Bette & Joan has so much to offer theatre-lovers, from intense rivalry to rapier wit, with a good dose of 1960s Hollywood glamour thrown in.”


“We are thrilled that my co-producer Emma Filby will be directing the piece - making her Frinton directorial debut, and Neil Gordon will be fully concept'ing the production with set and costume design”

“This is sure to be a particular favourite of the Frinton Summer Theatre’s 2023 season, so it has never been more appropriate to say, book early to avoid disappointment.”  

All evening performances are at 7:30pm, with matinee performances at 2:30pm, and ticket prices range from £20 to £25 for evening shows and from £18 to £23 for matinees, with a 10% discount if you book every show in the McGrigor Hall season.

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