The Breakers
The Breakers
a play for the stage loosely based on Franz Grillparzer's Hero and Leander tragedy: 'Des Meeres und der Liebe Wellen' – the waves of the sea and of love.

The plot:
An old Irishman is busking in a passage in the London Underground. Passengers scurry past in order to catch a late train. There appears to be a sudden power cut. When power is restored, some strange characters emerge from the passageways and converge on the busker, who reacts in terror.

Slowly it becomes clear that the old man has died and that these characters are all fragments of his own disintegrating self. He is forced to give them some kind of cue so that they can present him with a picture of his life.

This takes the form of a ballad he knows, concerning Hero and Leander.

No sooner has he sung this than they have the material they need and the play can begin, with him as a forced observer who, chorus-like, interrupts and protests at odd intervals.

Gradually it dawns on him what they are showing him, and, when the tragic end arrives, he is encouraged to join in with a repeat performance but one in which he can change the outcome.