Theatre Forty will present a Zoom reading of a new play, Mr. Simpson by Stephen Maitland-Lewis on Wednesday, May 12, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. PDT. The cast includes Diana Angelina, Eric Keitel, Jennifer Robbins and David Hunt Stafford.  See below for info.

Ernest Simpson, who changed the course of world history, is the forgotten man. His life has been eclipsed by the notorious separation that enabled his wife’s sensational affair with Nazi-leaning Edward VIII, King of England, who, in 1936, ultimately abdicated the world’s most powerful throne to marry American divorcée Wallis Simpson. Two decades later, American-born British shipping broker Simpson, nearing the end of his life, desperately seeks the honor and recognition he feels he deserves for the dignified and patriotic “sacrifice” of his wife that likely saved Great Britain from an alliance with Nazi Germany.

The play finds Ernest Simpson, financially stretched, living in a mediocre Manhattan hotel suite desperately trying to interest a newspaper in publishing the inside story of the Wallis Simpson-King Edward VIII-Ernest Simpson triangle. He hopes to sell the story of a married woman who naively entered into a relationship with Royal playboy Edward, the future king of England, only to find herself blackmailed into the headline-making scandalous marriage that nearly brought down the British monarchy. Edward and Wallis, now the Duke and Duchess of Windsor residing only blocks from the hotel, are not amused by the prospect of reopening old wounds.

Stephen Maitland-Lewis is the playwright. The British-born resident of Beverly Hills is an award-winning novelist, whose books include Hero on Three Continents; Emeralds Never Fade (Benjamin Franklin Award for Historical Fiction; Written Arts Award for Best Fiction); ; Ambition (Rebecca’s Reads Choice Awards, first place, General Fiction); and Botticelli’s Bastard (Independent Publisher Book Awards, Bronze Award, Best Regional Fiction- Europe).

Visit the website to access this Zoom reading on Wednesday, May 12 at 7:00 p.m. PDT. This is a FREE event. The non-profit Theatre 40 gratefully accepts donations in support of its artistic endeavors at