Flare Path

“Flare Path” was written by Flt. Lt. Terrence Rattigan in 1942 while he was serving as an air gunner/radio operator in coastal command. During this time he experienced the same pressures as bomber command while part of the crew of a Short’s Sunderland seaplane.

A small group of airman who are due to meet their wives at the hotel close to their aerodrome in Lincolnshire in late May, Pilot; Flt. Lt. “Teddy” Graham, meeting up with his actress wife Patricia, his air gunner Dusty Miller who is waiting on the arrival of his wife Maudie and a Polish pilot, Count “Johnny” Skriczevinsky who is visiting his second wife Doris.

When an unexpected visitor in the form of Hollywood heartthrob Peter Kyle turns up it looks to be a more interesting weekend than any of them could foretell. But the time together is curtailed when the crews are called away for an unexpected mission. As morning arrives the aircraft return and when one of the aircraft does not return we discover the heartbreak and sorrow for those who lose a loved one.

This play does not fall easily into any genre as it is a war story with no action, a comedy, a drama and a romance.

Here is the Flare Path NODA writeup.