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Star Quality (BBC Drama, Susannah York, Ian Richardson)

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In Star Quality (which gave its name to the anthology series of the mid 1980’s) the focus is on ageing actress Lorraine Barrie (Susannah York), whose manipulative ways threaten to come unstuck when she tangles with Ray Malcolm (Ian Richardson), her latest director, who isn’t keen on having her take the role but the writers insist.

Fantastic performances, especially from York and the always superb Richardson (his way with dialogue is a major treat in all of his roles) make this tale of theatre folk a real joy. York is the star but Richardson steals all the scenes he is in.

Cast: SUSANNAH YORK as Lorraine Barry; IAN RICHARDSON as Ray Malcolm; PETER CHELSOM as Bryan Snow; DAVID YELLAND as Tony Orford; DAVID SWIFT as J.C. Roebuck; PAM FERRIS as Marian Blake; NEVILLE BARBER as Gerald Wentworth; TIM BANNERMAN as Charles Hawkins; BEN ARIS as Eric Larch; JO KENDALL as Linda Copeland; AMANDA DONOHOE, BILL RITCHIE as Understudies; SYDNEY LIVINGSTONE, JONATHAN LACEY, LUCY HANCOCK as Stage Management; AUBREY WOODS as Adrian Gurney; MAGGIE OLLERENSHAW as Usherette

Writer: Stanley Price / Music: John Altman / Executive Producer: Victor Glynn / Script Editor: Alan Drury / Costumes: Irene Whilton / Production Design: Bruce Macadie / Producer: Alan Shallcross / Director: Alan Dossor

UK / BBC One – Quintet Films – A&E Network / 1×76 minute episode / Broadcast 10 November 1985