Busybody: An Introduction

Jack Popplewell was born March 22nd, 1911 in Leeds, UK. He was not only an extremely successful playwright, but also an accomplished composer and songwriter. His long list of works include the hit songs “If I Should Fall in Love Again” and “My Girl’s an Irish Girl." The latter was performed by Bing Crosby in 1952.

Popplewell’s grasp of humor on the stage was spectacular, so much so that even now his shows are a popular choice for theaters around the world. “Busybody” has also been fully translated and adapted to the big screen in Denmark as Mordskab  and in Norway as Skulle det dukke opp flere lik, er det bare å ringe.

Popplewell passed away on November 16th, 1996 in Bath, UK. He was survived by two daughters, and the enormous impression he left on the theatre and music communities may very well live on indefinitely.

“Busybody” is the story of one Mrs. Piper, a cleaning lady who discovers a dead body in the building she cares for. She calls the police, of course, but lo and behold the body has moved! Things become even more confused when the supposed dead man shows up, alive, later that night!

Will the mystery ever be solved? Just how does a “definitely dead” man move to different rooms while the police are on their way? And how in the world could he show up the same night, completely oblivious to the everything going on? You’ll just have to come and see “Busybody” to find out!

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MRS. PIPER: I come in ‘ere, and dialed nine-nine-nine. And while they was taking down my particulars, I nearly ‘ad a fit. ‘E was draped over that chair.
GODDARD: A dead man?
MRS. PIPER: Yes. It was the boss.
GODDARD: So where is he?
MRS. PIPER: I dunno. I only know ‘e was ‘ere at the time. I don’t know where ‘e’s took ‘isself off to.
GODDARD: Superintendent Baxter won’t like this little lot, madam.
MRS. PIPER: Crumbs. To hear you talk, anybody’d think I’d mislaid him. ‘Ere, what’s he like?
GODDARD: The Super? A holy terror. He went home early to spend a couple of days in bed.
MRS. PIPER: Sounds like my old man. Once he goes to bed he usually stays flopped out for a couple of days.
GODDARD: I wouldn’t like to be you if you’ve called him out on a false alarm. He’s got a severe chill. I can’t wait to see his face. Where are you going?
MRS. PIPER: I can’t wait either.
GODDARD: I’m afraid you’ll have to, madam. You’ve reported a murder.
MRS. PIPER: And it’s the last time I do, then. It’s more nuisance than it’s worth. I mean, how could a body disappear?

-an excerpt from "Busybody"