Major Barbara

Read by LibriVox Volunteers

(4.4 stars; 22 reviews)

George Bernard Shaw's Major Barbara focuses on the family of aristocratic Lady Britomart Undershaft and her estranged husband Andrew, a millionaire armaments manufacturer. Their daughters Sarah and Barbara are both engaged to be married, and Lady Britomart decides to ask Andrew for monetary support. Barbara is a Major in the Salvation Army, and agrees to let her father visit the mission in the East End of London where she works. In exchange, she agrees to visit his munitions factory. The conflict between Barbara's philanthropic idealism and her father's hard-headed capitalism clash when he decides he wants to fund the Salvation Army. Shaw's comedy, as always, delves into political and social issues of the period, and provides a roster of finely- and humorously-drawn characters. (Summary by Elizabeth Klett)

Stephen Undershaft: Chuck Williamson
Lady Britomart Undershaft: Amy L. Gramour
Sarah Undershaft: Arielle Lipshaw
Barbara Undershaft/Rummy Mitchens: Elizabeth Klett
Charles Lomax: mb
Adolphus Cusins: Chris Marcellus
Morrison/Bilton: Todd
Andrew Undershaft: Bruce Pirie
Snobby Price: Joshua Tesch
Jenny Hill: Grace Garrett
Peter Shirley: Ken Garrett
Bill Walker: Algy Pug
Mrs. Baines: Margaret Espaillat
Narrator: David Lawrence

Audio edited by Elizabeth Klett (3 hr 14 min)


Act 1 47:04 Read by LibriVox Volunteers
Act 2 1:13:06 Read by LibriVox Volunteers
Act 3 1:14:31 Read by Elizabeth Klett


4 of 5

(5 stars)

Though admittedly this exchange between "Charity" and "Evil", i.e. "The Salvation Army" and "An Unabashedly Evil Capitalist" does reveal charities' raison d'être is in averting all possible outlets for actual and total systemic change for the true and lasting benefit of all via any means necessary against the capitalists, the power elite, etc... who do and will always use any means necessary to ensure the survival of their Fascistic system (Fascism as defined by Mussolini himself has always used Capitalism as a mask), Shaw was himself too naïve to understand what he had written. That is, of course, going by his collected works as well as his life. I do still give this 5 stars, however, knowing many others around the globe do grasp what Shaw himself could not. Mrs Baines. No, Sir: the whole nation does not know it, or we should not be crippled as we are for want of money to carry our work through the length and breadth of the land. Let me tell you that there would have been rioting this winter in London but for us. Undershaft. You really think so? Mrs Baines. I know it. I remember 1886, when you rich gentlemen hardened your hearts against the cry of the poor. They broke the windows of your clubs in Pall Mall. Undershaft [gleaming with approval of their method] And the Mansion House Fund went up next day from thirty thousand pounds to seventy-nine thousand! I remember quite well. Mrs Baines. Well, won’t you help me to get at the people? They won’t break windows then. Come here, Price. Let me show you to this gentleman [Price comes to be inspected]. Do you remember the window breaking? Price. My ole father thought it was the revolution, ma’am. Mrs Baines. Would you break windows now? Price. Oh no ma’m. The windows of eaven av bin opened to me. I know now that the rich man is a sinner like myself.

Major Barbara

(5 stars)

LibriVox did it once more. Great reading for a really good play. Thanks to all the readers, editors, and everyone else that contributed to this audiobook and all the others. : )


(5 stars)

Another well read Shaw classic. My thanks to the readers.

Great Job!

(5 stars)

The entire cast is excellent. Well done!