I performed this play in repertory with As You Like It, both productions of the Royal Shakespeare Company.

It was a new play by Peter Flannery based on the life of Peter Rachman, a famous property mogul played by Antony Sher and went from Auschwitz to the present day, and in every decade, if there was a young man as part of the story, it was me.

As You Like It

In this production by the Royal Shakespeare Company, I played Silvius, the young shepherd in (unrequited) love with Phoebe.

The production opened at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon in the autumn of 1989, then toured to Newcastle before playing the London season at the Barbican in 1990.

All I will say about this production is that I hated my costume! When the story got to the forest of Arden, everyone suddenly wore underclothes. All the other boys who were the Duke's followers got to wear cut-off long johns and singlets, but I had to wear white Y-fronts and have flowers in my hair. It was mortifying. The best thing about working at the RSC was making some great friends that I've kept in touch with ever since.

Sophie Thompson, who played Rosalind worked with me again in the films Emma and Nicholas Nickleby and as Juliet to my Romeo at the RNT studio.


Stephen Unwin, who had directed me in The Conquest of the South Pole, asked me to be in another weird German play called Knickers by Carl Sternheim, at the Bristol Old Vic theatre

The play is about a woman whose knickers fall down when she is watching a procession go by one day. This causes two men to become infatuated with her and move into the apartment she shares with her husband! My character was obsessed with Nietzsche. The other character who was in love was played by an actor who actually left the production after the first preview, so we were flung into turmoil (which was of course rather exciting).

This was the first play I had done in a rep in England, and I remember feeling like a proper actor going on the bus every day from my digs to the theatre.


In Heavenly I played an angel who came down to earth each week and looked at everyday things from his point of view. The six parts of this series were originally included as segments in the Channel 4 show Club X, but were later broadcast on their own.

Heavenly was written and directed by my friend Mark Cousins who later went on to run the Edinburgh Film Festival as well as present many TV shows and write many books on cinema, as well as be a lovely person.

My brother Tom appeared in this series! This is him in the picture with me standing in the puddle.

Victor and Barry Australian tour

At the end of 1988, Forbes Masson and I flew to Sydney, Australia to start rehearsals and in early January 1989 we opened at the Playhouse of the Sydney Opera House in See Victor and Barry and Faint, a version of the show we had performed the previous year at the Edinburgh Festival, on tour in Scotland and at the Donmar Warehouse in London as part for the Perrier Pick of the Fringe season.

After a month in Sydney we toured to Adelaide, Alice Springs, Cairns and Rockhampton.  

I remember that the hole in the ozone layer had recently been discovered above Australia and there was a huge PR campaign going on to encourage people to protect themselves from the sun. We were both incredibly pale and people would literally scream 'skin cancer' at us in the street, and ask us what factor we were using.

Here we are in a short clip from a hilarious TV show in Adelaide called A Touch of Elegance, and pieces we did for the ABC news in Sydney the Rockhampton local news show.