Sheila Hancock


BBC Radio 4, 24 December 1986 to 30 November 1987 (pilot + 6 episodes in 1 series)


Panel quiz about the theatre, contested by two pairs of actors.

Rounds included "identify the play from the famous phrase", "who is parodying whom", some theatre trivia, theatrical jargon explained. There were anecdotes from the panel's career, and lots of theatrical in-jokes.

The show ended with a performance round - each team reads a "play" compiled from short extracts of existing works, and the other team tries to work out which works are played in the players' play.

Sheila Hancock keeps good order, awards points, and everything moves at a brisk pace. The show's an entertaining listen without actually telling us very much new, and could very easily have gone out in Radio 2's panel game strand.


An early work in the career of producer Bill Dare, who went on to create topical satire-and-impressions show Dead Ringers.

Web links

Sample episode at (the file also has most of a Brain of Britain episode, and a complete Any Questions).


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