She That Plays the Queen

7 Dec

This book by Aline Waites is going into print tomorrow and should soon be available on Amazon to order.

  1. Aline Waites is an English actress, director, producer, reviewer and writer. She is widely known for a long spell playing Gwen, the daughter of Mrs Dale, the BBC’s famous fictional diarist in Mrs Dale’s Diary. Mrs Dale was played by the Real Jessie Matthews. In the story one of the little girls calls herself Jessie Maffews. Jessie was the greatest British star of the thirties.
    “My Mother and I used to do impersonations of Jessie when I was little. My mother loved her, but found her well trained ‘posh’ accent hilarious and that added flavour to our impersonations. ‘Over my shoulder goes one care’ and ‘He dances overhead on the ceiling near my bed’  (maybe that is why my ceiling fell down on July 12th)
    So after these childish adventures it was even more amazing to me that it was the actual Jessie Matthews who became my second mother”.

She That Plays the Queen is a quote from Hamlet – well nearly. The quote is He that Plays the King and it was used by Kenneth Tynan as a title of his book on the great British actors of the forties, fifties and sixties.  It is about the uneasy relationship of Two glamorous leading ladies living in the Spotlight – Stars of Stage and Screen.  Maxine Fletcher and the one who calls herself Jessie Maffews. Their lives collide over and over again and their hatred is unreconcilable = even though they trie hard for the sake of people surrounding them.They first collided during World War Two in Blitz ridden Hull.

The reason for using Hull as the background to Act one is the fact that the bombing of Hull never received any publicity because the news had to be hidden from the Germans. So the press gave Hull a miss and concentrated on Coventry. The people in Hull were very angry and thought nobody cared that they were being blown jup night after night. I lived in Hull as a child and when I left it was just one enormous bomb site. This year it is Cultural City so they must have fixed it up by now.

The settings are real and so are some of the events, but all the characters are figments of my imagination which has been nourished by a lifetime in the business known as Show.

I hope people will like it. .

Here is a short excerpt from Act three.


You must get over this antagonism to Jessica. Nobody else has a problem with her. She is one of the most popular ladies in the business.’

‘Huh, nobody has known her as long as I have.’

‘That is as maybe. But you are hardly as high in the popularity stakes.’

Maxine shrugged. ‘I’m not in the business to be popular.’

‘Then that is a problem. You really should be a little more careful. Actors have ways of destroying those who are dismissive of them They can ruin your performance in ways you will never understand’

‘It’s very kind of you Stanley to take such trouble over me but I have never kow towed to anyone in my life and I’m not about to start now.’

‘Then you may just find you are out of a job. Amy is learning your part –

right now as we speak

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: