Ovation Theatres


TITANIC - THE INQUIRY (40 minute version)

“Iceberg, right ahead!” The immortal words spoken at 11.39pm, on 14th April 1912, by look-out Frederick Fleet that signalled the beginning of the end of the White Star Line steamship, RMS Titanic.

‘Titanic – The Inquiry’ is based on act three of Ovation’s 2012 drama ‘Iceberg Right Ahead’. Aside from the Attorney General, the characters are all passengers and crew who sailed on the Titanic’s maiden voyage and gave evidence at the British Inquiry into the  tragedy. 

Some of the words are taken directly from the transcripts of both the American Enquiry and the British Inquiry.

‘Titanic – The Inquiry’ was written by Chris Burgess with a little help from John Plews.


Titanic – The Inquiry is suitable for an afternoon or evening presentation using a group of eight actors (amateur or professional) to read the characters and John Plews would (if available) play the Attorney General. 

There is a PowerPoint presentation including a five-minute 3D animation of the ship and there would be a second half discussion on all things Titanic. 

The presentation (including an interval) lasts about ninety minutes (depending on the length of the discussion).


ATTORNEY GENERAL Sir Rufus Isaacs (51, representing the Board of Trade)
FREDERICK FLEET (24, Liverpudlian, a look-out)
REGINALD LEE (41, Oxfordshire, a look-out)
J. BRUCE ISMAY (49, M.D. of the White Star Line, owner of the ship)
VIOLET JESSOP (24, Irish heritage, First Class Stewardess)
ROBERT HICHENS (29, fiery Cornishman, quartermaster)
MARGARET (MOLLY) BROWN (44, first-class passenger, forthright American)
ETTIE DEAN (32, third-class passenger, working class Londoner, mother of Millvina)


Using the above characters the first half lasts approx. 40mins. There is then an interval and the second half is a discussion (with PowerPoint headings) led by John Plews on ‘all things Titanic’.  There is an extended version ( by 20 mins) which includes the testimonies of Second Officer Charles Lightoller and first-class passenger Lady Lucy Duff-Gordon.

The characters are real. However, their inter-play outside the Inquiry has been invented. Little is known about the personal lives of the crew members, and their dialogue has been freely fictionalised. The appearance of Molly Brown and Ettie Dean at the UK Inquiry is ‘artistic licence’. 

The 1912 British Wreck Commission Inquiry into the sinking of RMS Titanic, on behalf of the British Board of Trade, ran from 2nd May to 3rd July. It was overseen by High Court Judge Lord Mersey of Toxteth and held in London at the Scottish Drill Hall, Buckingham Gate.


‘Titanic The Inquiry’ is available for both professional and amateur companies in the UK and the rest of the world.  

If you would like to produce ‘Titanic The Inquiry’ please contact  John at Ovation on:  44 (0) 7973 502 189 
email: john@ovationproductions.com