On The Level

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The Saville Theatre playbill for On The Level


Delia and Brian Hodgson, working as Unit Delta Plus, created music and sound effects for Ron Grainer's second play On The Level, a musical which opened in late February 1966 at The Royal Court Theatre in Liverpool[1] and was repeated at the Saville Theatre in London, opening on 19th April 1966.[2]

Delia and Brian spent 67½ man-hours on it between 6th August 1965 and 18th February 1966, working with Ron Grainer, Wendy Toye and Diane Majue,[3] delivered 20 sound sequences lasting a total of 15m18s[4] and Delia and Brian went to Liverpool to attend the opening night and a party on the 25th as guests of the show's producer Martin Landau.[5][6]

Although a newspaper article previewing the show mentions "electronic music in the “Dr Who” vein which owes nothing to the men in the orchestra pit",[7] Unit Delta Plus are not credited in either of the theatre playbills.[8][2]


                                             mins. secs.
Opening sequence                               1   25
Albert Hall head-ache                          1   26
Hieroglyphics                                      35
Wedding sequence (organ type)                      10
Thermodynamics (  ditto   )                        30
Strangely Attractive ( ditto )                     50
5 versions of "Thermo" phrases                     33
"Nicies" with extension                        1    4
"Nasties"                                      1
Planetarium                                    1   30
Stars, G & E                                       20
Bell sequence                                      30
Morse for headlines                            1
Clock rhythms + pen @ MM  = 100                1
Whoosh (for planetarium)                           15
Impacts                                            10
Chuck's inspiration                            1
Realisation of Land of Hope and Glory
  with separate rhythm track                   1   10
"Biscuit breaking"                                 15
Howler with twang                                  35





  1. Brian Hodgson's obituary in The Guardian, 7 July 2001
  2. 2.0 2.1 Playbill for the Saville Theatre performances, on the Ron Grainer web site
  3. DD094630: Unit Delta Plus' timesheet
  4. 4.0 4.1 DD094616: Unit Delta Plus' final bill
  5. DD093852: Unit Delta Plus' reply to Martin Landau's letter, thanking him for his hospitality and for the party on Friday night; the only Friday between the 18th and the 28th is the 25th February 1966.
  6. DD093822: Envelope of Martin Landau's letter to Brian Hodgson, postmarked "Liverpool 28 Feb 1966".
  7. You, You and You Set To Music: Preview in a newspaper article by Gerry Dempsey.
  8. DD093707: First page of the theatre playbill for the Royal Court Theatre.