David Slattery-Christy | Author & Playwright

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About David

David is an Oxford born award-winning playwright and author featured on BBC Radio and TV. He was the Ivor Novello Consultant on Robert Altman and Julian Fellowes OSCAR and BAFTA winning film GOSFORD PARK.

Website Images copyright: Mick Ellison, Phil Downie,  Andy Hollingworth, Gosford Park Film, David Slattery-Christy.

All Rights Reserved.



Flyte or Fancy

Evelyn Waugh Meets Harry Clifton on the Road to Brideshead

Hardback edition now available from all good bookstores and amazon online. RRP £19.99

“An insightful, fictionalised slice of literary history, which will be of particular interest to Waugh fans…Highly recommended!”

Amazon Review

“The extraordinary life of Harry Clifton”

Lancashire Life

“Evelyn Waugh described the Cliftons of Lytham as ‘all tearing mad’ and along with Harry Clifton he was sent down from Oxford without a degree. Join them on a journey of love, friendship, excess and liberation as they fight to be free of the dynastic and religious expectations the world demands of them.”

5 Star Global Rating

Unseen Histories / Off The Shelf / A Novel Evening

“In this captivating episode of the Explaining History podcast, we sit down with David Slattery-Christy, author of “Flyte Or Fancy,” to delve into the tragic and fascinating life of aristocrat Harry Clifton. Join us as we explore the tumultuous world of Harry Clifton, a figure whose life story reads like a novel, filled with grandeur, crisis, and heartbreak…”

Explaining History

PR by Kelly Pike at Folk Public Relations: www.folkpublicrelations.co.uk


My Life & In Search of Ruritania

The Life and Times of Ivor Novello

“David is the absolute authority on Novello, and this new edition including Novello’s own My Life is a bit of a must…” Alexandra Coghlan – The Sunday Times (2023)

New hardback and paperback edition now available that includes Novello’s own autobiography titled My Life that charts his life and career from birth until 1933. It gives a fascinating insight into his world as he discusses the famous actors and actresses he worked with in the first half of the 20th Century. RRP Paperback £14.99 – Hardback £24.99


Naturally Insane! The Life of Dan Leno

Starring BGT Finalist Steve Royle!

London Showcase held at the Criterion Theatre, Piccadilly Circus, on  Monday 15th November 2021. Thank you to our fantastic audiences!

Special Guest Star as Herbert Beerbohm Tree actor & comedian John Thomson

   “A moving and beautifully-written play about Dan Leno, a Music Hall legend…Fabulous performances especially from the very talented Steve Royle.” Francesca Clementis

“Steve Royle has funny bones and this unique, heartfelt production allows us to see both Steve’s magnificent talent and Dan Leno’s” Peter Kay

“A play that captures the heart and soul and genius of our greatest Victorian comedian, Dan Leno ‘The Funiest Man On Earth’. Steve Royle as leno is a revelation – a master comic playing a master comic. Roy Hudd OBE

“A supreme performance by Steve Royle…”

Lancashire Evening Post

Lovely to see Peter Kay at the Lytham Hall Performance!

“An utter triumph” Alt Blackpool

“A standing ovation on a glorious summer evening at Lytham Hall was a tribute to the power of the writing by David Slattery-Christy and a simply outstanding performance by comedian and actor Steve Royle.”

Toby Stirling – Lancashire Evening Post

“There is tragedy and there is comedy but in drama when the two melt together like twilight into evening, then you know you are witnessing something very special…”

Entertainment Then & Now

“He fully inhabits the role and simply is Dan Leno”

    Julian Wilde – Evening Gazette

“An award worthy performance…It’s a must see.”

       Robin Duke


Edwardian actress, beauty and singer Lily Elsie (1886-1962), star of Lehar’s original production of The Merry Widow in 1907, had a Blue Plaque placed on her former London home at Stanhope Place, Hyde Park, W2.



BBC Radio 3 – Composer of the Week – Ivor Novello

With Donald Macleod, David Slattery-Christy, Rosy Runciman and Billy Differ


Ghost Lights
Written & Directed By David Slattery-Christy & Music By Ivor Novello and Noel Coward
Finale Concert for London Song Festival 2020

5 Star Reviews for Ghost Lights “Totally fabulous!” (Boyz Magazine) and “Bliss” (Sardines Magazine)

Hinde Street Methodist Church, London

Watch for free via The London Song Festival

Rosemary Ashe as Dorothy Dickson

Rebecca Louise Dale as Mary Ellis

Fenton Gray as Ivor Novello

Justina Kehinde as Elisabeth Welch

MD : Nigel Foster / Choreographer: Aimee Leigh

BBC Announcer: Steve Royle / Sound Effects: David Brown



5 star rating

My Life & In Search of Ruritania – The Life & Times of Ivor Novello

“As latecomers to Gosford Park, we were intrigued by the more than passing references to Ivor Novello. The book is a delightful look into the life and work of the composer of “Keep The Home Fires Burning” and will surely keep your interest on a coast-to-coast flight.” (2016)

Phil Stevens – Los Angeles

Latest Books

The Mistletoe

Legend of Minster Lovell

The Mistletoe Haunting - Legend of Minster Lovell

5 star rating

“A beautiful book and beautifully written”

BBC Radio Oxford

Mildred On
The Marne

Mildred Aldrich, Front-Line Witness 1914-1918

Mildred On The Marne, David Slattery-Christy

5 star rating

“Move over Downton Abbey!”

WW1 Centenary Edition

My Life & In Search
of Ruritania

Ivor Novello

5 star rating

“An absorbing and thoroughly engaging read”

Featured on BBC Radio 3

Composer of the Week

Edwardian Beauty

Lily Elsie & The Merry Widow

5 star rating

“A fascinating read”

Alan Titchmarsh

New edition featuring the biography ‘Anything But Merry!’ and the screenplay ‘The Last Edwardian Star’

“Glittering” The Stage

Royal Palace Gardens

Blackpool’s Lost Victorian Pleasure Gardens

“Fabulous book – I cannot put it down”

Featured on BBC Radio Lancashire

Latest Plays & Librettos

Elvira & I


BBC Radio Lancashire

“Unusual and thought-provoking play…constructed from real events in Puccini’s life”

(David Wheeler)

Forever Nineteen

“skilful crafting”

(The Guardian)

The Postcard


(The Independent)

Dan Leno – A Royal Jester!

“This unnique, heartfelt production allows us to see both Steve’s magnificent talent and Dan Leno’s”

(Peter Kay)

“A play that captures the heart and soul and genius of our greatest Victorian comedian, Dan Leno”

(Roy Hudd OBE)

Traveller’s Tale. The Making Of A Fairground Showman

A new book telling the story of my grandfather Reggie Pratley

Ivor Novello & Gosford Park

BBC Radio 3 featured Ivor Novello as
Composer of the Week with Donald Macleod and David Slattery-Christy

ivor novello portrait


Donald Macleod (BBC Radio 3), David Slattery-Christy &

Rosy Runciman (Archivist for Delfont Mackintosh Theatres)

Novello Theatre’s Waldorf Bar, 24 October, 2016.


David with Donald Macleod at BBC Radio 3, Broadcasting House, London

recording for Novello’s Composer of the Week programmes. 24 October, 2016.

Just twenty years ago the name Ivor Novello would have meant little to anyone. Discarded into the garbage can of history, Novello’s fate was less than dignified.  Even the music award which bears his name, the Ivor’s,  seemed to do little to remind people of who Ivor Novello actually was and what he achieved across theatre and film genres.

Robert Altman’s decision to portray Novello in his film Gosford Park, and use Novello’s music, changed everything. Ironic really, because the Hollywood system which had failed to appreciate and fully utilise Novello’s abilities during his lifetime, would be the same system several decades later that would catapult Novello and his music back into the world.

Latest From The Blog


After much hard work and much redrafting I am pleased to say…

Naturally Insane! West End Criterion Theatre

"What a great show...Steve Royle as Dan leno was superb. Brilliant…

Latest Tweets

Flyte or Fancy by @DSCAuthor 5 Star: "An insightful, fictionalised slice of literary history, which will be of particular interest to Waugh fans... Highly recommended!" @LythamHall @PlackittBooth @Foyles @AmazonUK @netflix @blackwelloxford @AmazonStudios

Wishing a very happy 82nd birthday to Barbra Streisand. Her life and career have been unparalleled. It's hard to believe how quickly time has flown by! @BarbraStreisand 💗👑🎂

Here's one of the best fan edits out there, produced in 2006 by GustavoDeSantaFe.

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