Madhouse on Castle Street (partially found BBC television play; 1963)

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Production still.

Status: Partially Found

Madhouse on Castle Street was a television play that was aired only once on January 13th, 1963, by BBC TV as a part of the BBC Sunday-Night Play series.


One of the lodgers of an English boarding house has locked himself in his room, leaving a note stating that he has decided to retire from the world. His sister and the boarders try to convince him to come out and explain himself.


The play was written by Evan Jones. Then-unknown musician Bob Dylan was cast for the role of the main character after Saville saw him perform in New York City; however, Dylan lacked the ability to play the part. Saville, still wanting to include Dylan, gave him the role of a new character––Bobby–-who punctuated scenes with commentary in the form of song. The main character was rewritten into two new ones. The production staff planned to shoot the play in a single recording session, but this failed. The play's completion was delayed due to a blizzard.[1]


The BBC wiped the master tape of the play in 1968 and no other copies are known to exist.[1]

Reel-to-reel recordings of four songs performed by Dylan, recorded by viewers of the program, were turned into the BBC in 2005 and remastered for partial use in the documentary Dylan in the Madhouse.[2] Two full tracks, "Ballad of the Gliding Swan" and "Blowin' in the Wind", were released on the bootleg album Bob Dylan & Friends - Decades Live'61 To '94. The script is also known to still exist.[3]


The "Blowin' in the Wind" and "Ballad of the Gliding Swan" recordings.

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