Monty Python star Graham Chapman’s show-stopping feat | Letters

Directing Graham Chapman in The Dog Beneath the Skin left a lasting impression on Duncan Noel-Paton

I was intrigued to read Michael Billington’s review of the seldom-performed The Dog Beneath the Skin, by WH Auden and Christopher Isherwood (G2, 13 March). This brought back a great many nostalgic and happy memories because, some 60 years ago, I directed it as my first play at Emmanuel College, Cambridge.

Billington considers the lengthy vicar’s sermon to be one of the play’s more interesting features, and, for me, it was memorable for the young undergraduate who played the vicar, but only on the condition that the sermon was not to be shortened in any way. His name was Graham Chapman, his performance was show-stopping and I came to see how much it anticipated his so much more famous work for Monty Python’s Flying Circus.
Duncan Noel-Paton
Faygate, West Sussex

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