Backnumbers: History

Backnumbers is classified as one of Alan Ayckbourn's Grey Plays. These are plays which are acknowledged miscellaneous minor pieces by Alan Ayckbourn, which have received limited performance but have never been published, are not available for production and are not included in the official canon of Ayckbourn plays.

Backnumbers is a compilation of music previously written by Alan Ayckbourn and the composer Paul Todd. It was premiered at the Stephen Joseph Theatre In The Round in 1983 as a lunchtime entertainment and consists of two parts – each with 10 songs.

By the time
Backnumbers was produced, Alan and Paul had six collaborations between them (and a seventh one, Incidental Music, was concurrently running as a late-night show). The shows highlighted some of their songs created for plays and revues between 1978 and 1983.

Backnumbers has not been performed again since its original production.

The Songs Of Backnumbers

Backnumbers 1-10 (original play / revue in brackets)
1. Open for Love (Myself)
2. What do They Expect? (
Suburban Strains)
3. Unlikely (
4. Strangers on a Train (
BBC Radio 4, February 1981)
5. Drinking at Charlie's (
First Course)
6. Teaching the Children (
7. Unlove Song (
Second Helping)
8. Tea Tango (
First Course)
9. Now and Again (
10. Big Finish (
Men on Women on Men)
Backnumbers 11-20 (original play / revue in brackets)
11. Jubilee Road (Second Helping)
12. Not for Sandy (
Making Tracks)
13. Air Raids (
First Course)
14. Risking (
Suburban Strains)
15. Showbiz Blues (
Second Helping)
16. Fancy Meeting You (
Second Helping)
17. Copytype (
Men on Women on Men)
18. Dorothy and Me (
Suburban Strains)
19. Wife Swap Dance (
20. Goodbye (
Suburban Strains)
All research for this page by Simon Murgatroyd.