Betwixt and Between
Book: Kate Hanenberg and Ned Paul Ginsburg;
Music: Ned Paul Ginsberg and Mary Lloyd-Butler
Additional Music: Kate Hanenberg
Lyrics: Ned Paul Ginsburg
“Betwixt and Between” is a musical adaptation of the novel “Hobberdy Dick” written in 1955 by K.M. Briggs, the author of “The Encyclopedia of Fairies” and other scholarly works. Miss Briggs is widely credited with making the study of folklore a respectable one, and is said to have been an important influence on J.R.R. Tolkien, among others.
The story takes place in Gloucestershire, England in 1652 in the aftermath of the English Civil Wars. Many Royalist families have been forced into exile as a result of Cromwell’s victory; among them are the Culvers, who have left Widford Manor and its guardian spirit Hobberdy Dick behind. Our story begins as the Widdisons, a Puritan family from London, take possession of the Manor. Samuel Widdison remains devastated by the death of his beloved first wife; neither his sons Joel and Jonathan, nor his second wife Rachel can penetrate the wall he has built around himself. George Batchford, the overseer of the estate, takes Samuel’s elder son Joel under his wing, while his lonely little brother Jonny soon becomes a favorite of the unseen Hobberdy Dick.
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GEORGE BATCHFORD, Estate overseer
SAMUEL WIDDISON, Merchant of London
MRS. DIMBLEDY, Mother of Samuel’s first wife; grandmother to Joel and Jonathan
JOEL WIDDISON, Samuel’s elder son, early twenties
JONATHAN WIDDISON, Samuel’s younger son, nine
RACHEL WIDDISON, Samuel’s second wife; stepmother to Jonathan and Joel
DILIGENCE GRIMSBY, Rachel’s daughter, 16
URSULA, the Widdisons’ servant
MOTHER DARKE, wanderer, late thirties
MADAM FETTIPLACE, neighbor (double cast Ursula)
ANNE SECKAR, gentlewoman,twentys
MR. STOUT, businessman (double cast Mrs. Dimbledy)
Chorus (1 woman; 2 men) as Villagers, Culver family; Soldiers