Play for Today (1970–1984)
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The Cheviot, the Stag and the Black, Black Oil 

Drama documentary adaptation of John McGrath's play staged by the 7:84 theatre company dealing with the exploitation of the Scottish people throughout history, from the brutal evictions of ... See full summary »

Director:

John Mackenzie

Writer:

John McGrath
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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
John Bett John Bett ... 7:84 Company - Sellar / Government Spokesman etc
David MacLennan David MacLennan ... 7:84 Company - Crofter etc
Dolina MacLennan Dolina MacLennan ... 7:84 Company - Singer etc
Elizabeth MacLennan Elizabeth MacLennan ... 7:84 Company - Lady Phosphate etc
Timothy Martin Timothy Martin ... 7:84 Company - Queen Victoria etc
Alex Norton ... 7:84 Company - Lord Vat / Singer etc
Bill Paterson ... 7:84 Company - McChuckemup / Texas Jim etc
Allan Ross Allan Ross ... 7:84 Company - Fiddle Music Man etc
John Byrne John Byrne ... 7:84 Company - Pop-Up Book
John McGrath John McGrath ... 7:84 Company - Writer / Director
Charles Kearney Charles Kearney ... Sellar
James Cosmo ... Loch
Stuart Mungall Stuart Mungall ... Husband
Terri Cavers Terri Cavers ... Wife (as Terry Cavers)
Iain Glass Iain Glass ... MacLeod (as Ian Glas)
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Storyline

Drama documentary adaptation of John McGrath's play staged by the 7:84 theatre company dealing with the exploitation of the Scottish people throughout history, from the brutal evictions of the Highland crofters by landowners to make way for the more economically viable Cheviot sheep in the 18th century, the development of stag hunts in Highland game parks in the 19th century and finally the exploitation of resources during the oil boom of the 1970's. Written by ben-5678

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Genres:

Comedy | Drama

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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

Scottish Gaelic | English

Release Date:

6 June 1974 (UK) See more »

Filming Locations:

Scotland, UK

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

 
The seminal work by John McGrath and 7:84 Theatre Company
10 January 2007 | by user-14466See all my reviews

There has never been a more entertaining, gripping, or ultimately uplifting treatment of recent Scottish history.

This musical drama was designed to be toured by a small band of actor/musicians, and it was indeed toured all over the Highlands and Islands. The television production draws on some of these actual performance events, in telling the tale of how Scotland was exploited from pre-Victorian times to the present day.

Along the way we meet some great Scottish characters, and are introduced to a number of villains both ancient and modern, both local and foreign, who have seen it as their destiny to achieve 'progress' for Scotland (and simultaneously to line their own pockets) while avoiding any engagement in the disastrous effects which their actions and policies have had on the people and on the land.

Some of the eye-witness accounts that we hear, are harrowing in the extreme. It is hard indeed to remain detached while hearing of women and children - the men-folk having been shipped overseas to fight Britain's wars - being driven off their crofts with such violence that some had their skulls smashed open.

The other side of the coin, though, is the delightful crop of humorous songs, including my favourite, "We Are The Men Who Own Your Glen".

John McGrath has produced other great plays, and both the Scottish and English 7:84 Theatre Companies have often performed with greatness. But this remains the best of their oevre, in my eyes.


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