Photograph of Act III of The Whip

Photograph of Act III of The Whip

This scene was the work of Bruce 'Sensation' Smith. From the bustling stables of scene one to the eerie recreation of Madame Tussaud's Chamber of Horrors - location of one of the crucial, if slightly improbable, plot developments - Smith's attention to detail was meticulous. However, in the final scene of the act, the designer responsible for so many remarkable spectacles surpassed himself. The Whip, the horse tipped to win the 2000 Guineas, was loaded into his horsebox at the station and the following scene then unfolded in continuous action. The train sets off. The villain of the piece is seen clambering along the running board and uncoupling the horsebox, which is left stationary. There is the thundering sound of an approaching express train as the trainer tries desperately to free his horse. The Whip is rescued in the nick of time as the following train rushes from the tunnel to shatter the horsebox to smithereens and career over on its side, gushing steam ... all in full view of the audience.