balancing acts behind the scenes at the national theatre

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Balancing Acts

Author : Nicholas Hytner
ISBN : 9781473545700
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 52. 64 MB
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The Sunday Times Bestseller This is the inside story of twelve years at the helm of Britain’s greatest theatre. It is a story of lunatic failures and spectacular successes such as The History Boys, War Horse and One Man, Two Guvnors; of opening the doors of the National Theatre to a broader audience than ever before, and changing the public’s perception of what theatre is for. It is about probing Shakespeare from every angle and reinventing the classics. About fostering new talent and directing some of the most celebrated actors of our times. Its cast includes the likes of Alan Bennett, Maggie Smith, Mike Leigh, Daniel Day-Lewis, Michael Gambon and Helen Mirren. Intimate, candid and insightful, Balancing Acts is a passionate exploration of the art and alchemy of making theatre.

Balancing Acts

Author : Nicholas Hytner
ISBN : 9780451493415
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 76. 89 MB
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From the Tony Award and Laurence Olivier Award-winning former director of London's National Theatre--this is a fascinating, candid, eloquent memoir about his career directing theater, producing films and opera, and working closely with some of the world's most celebrated actors. The list of Nicholas Hytner's accomplishments is long and distinguished: as Artistic Director of London's National Theatre from 2003-2015, he directed and produced a great number of their most popular and memorable plays and musicals, many of which have come to Broadway: Carousel, Richard Bean's One Man, Two Guvnors, David Hare's Stuff Happens among them. He directed both the London and Broadway productions of Miss Saigon, each of which ran for ten years. He directed Alan Bennett's The Madness of George III on both stage and screen. In short: He is one of today's most successful and admired theatrical impresarios. In Balancing Acts, Hytner gives us a detailed behind-the-scenes look at his creative process. From reviving classic musicals and mastering Shakespeare to commissioning new plays, he shows theater making to be a necessarily collaborative exercise, and he writes insightfully about the actors and playwrights he's worked with: Derek Jacobi, Richard Griffiths, Helen Mirren, Maggie Smith, Michael Gambon, Harold Pinter, and Tom Stoppard among them. With a cultural range that spans from The Mikado to The Lady in the Van, Balancing Acts is not only a memoir but a gathering of illuminating notes on the art of directing and a thoughtful meditation on the purpose of theater.

Peter Hall S Diaries

Author : Sir Peter Hall
ISBN : 9781783192205
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 79. 60 MB
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A new edition of Sir Peter Hall's Diaries with an introduction from the man himself. A fascinating read for any fan of theatre history in Britain.

Stage Blood

Author : Michael Blakemore
ISBN : 0571241387
Genre : Actors
File Size : 69. 77 MB
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In 1971, Michael Blakemore joined the National Theatre as Associate Director under Laurence Olivier. The National, still based at the Old Vic, was at a moment of transition awaiting the move to its vast new home on the South Bank. Relying on generous subsidy, it would need an extensive network of supporters in high places. Olivier, a scrupulous and brilliant autocrat from a previous generation, was not the man to deal with these political ramifications. His tenure began to unravel and, behind his back, Peter Hall was appointed to replace him in 1973. As in other aspects of British life, the ethos of public service, which Olivier espoused, was in retreat. Having staged eight productions for the National, Blakemore found himself increasingly uncomfortable under Hall's regime. Stage Blood is the candid and at times painfully funny story of the events that led to his dramatic exit in 1976. He recalls the theatrical triumphs and flops, his volatile relationship with Olivier including directing him in Long Day's Journey into Night, the extravagant dinners in Hall's Barbican flat with Harold Pinter, Jonathan Miller and the other associates, the opening of the new building, and Blakemore's brave and misrepresented decision to speak out. He would not return to the National for fifteen years.

Get Me The Urgent Biscuits

Author : Jane Slight
ISBN : 1474605206
Genre :
File Size : 73. 20 MB
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At eighteen, after moving to London with dreams of becoming an actress, an impressionable girl who paints freckles on her face begins work experience in a West End theatre company. In between mail-outs and making cups of coffee she meets the formidable producer Thelma Holt. Within a fortnight Thelma has stolen her, cancelled her audition for RADA, sent her to evening classes to learn to type, organised a miniscule salary and renamed her. From that moment on she becomes Sweetpea. Her days are spent in an eccentric office where Alan Rickman or Vanessa Redgrave might casually pop in at any moment. Evenings are filled with the adrenaline of an opening-night performance or the chatter of a smart restaurant where casting options for the next production are discussed. Existing somewhere between glamour and penury, Sweetpea finds herself surrounded by dynamic personalities and struggling to trust her own creative instincts. Over the years her apprenticeship takes in unusual demands, misbehaving actors, divinely inspired directors and even a hot-air balloon ride with British theatre's finest. GET ME THE URGENT BISCUITS is a keenly observed memoir about the vanishing world of London's West End in the 1980s and 1990s, in which a young woman is swept into the orbit of a theatrical impresario. Shrewd, poignant and irresistibly funny, above all it is a coming-of-age story about the search for independence and an ode to the beguiling nature of theatre.

Shouting In The Evenings

Author : James Hayes
ISBN : 9781785892660
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 85. 17 MB
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In 1963, a young man from Limerick took his £25 savings and journeyed to London to become an actor. To pay his way through drama school he worked as a security guard (once for The Beatles) and served drinks to Miss World contestants at the Lyceum Theatre, then a Mecca Ballroom. While still a student, he was picked to play a small role in Andorra in the inaugural season of the National Theatre at the Old Vic... Fifty years later, while appearing in his fifty-sixth NT production – Pirandello’s Liolà – he was invited by Director Nicholas Hytner to take part in 50 Years on Stage, the NT’s anniversary celebration. Four days on, he is on stage in New York for the Press Night of Trevor Nunn’s production of Beckett’s All That Fall with Michael Gambon. James Hayes has worked with most of the leading actors in the country from Laurence Olivier, Maggie Smith, Anthony Hopkins and Paul Scofield to Michael Gambon, Ian McKellen, Penelope Wilton and Anne-Marie Duff. Touring the world, he has played in Greece, Poland, the USA, Japan, India, Hong Kong, South Korea and China. And, of course, Milton Keynes, Sunderland and Truro! Shouting in the Evenings covers many of the famous (Amadeus) and infamous (The Romans in Britain) productions Hayes has appeared in, and records with affection and humour the changes along the way. It will appeal to seasoned and amateur actors alike, as well as those with an interest in all things theatrical.

Stage Managing Chaos

Author : Jackie Harvey
ISBN : 9781476666648
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 34. 68 MB
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In the early 1970s London's National Theatre, led by Sir Laurence Olivier, launched an infamous avant garde production of The Architect and the Emperor of Assyria. Concerned that his classical approach would clash with the "enfant terrible" director, Victor Garcia, Olivier enlisted stage manager Jackie Harvey to keep a diary of the often ludicrous, occasionally creative, always challenging rehearsals. Anthony Hopkins and Jim Dale costarred in the surreal two-man piece. Led by the eccentric Garcia, the play quickly descended into a chaotic farce. Missed deadlines, technical hitches, unauthorized nudity and backstage feuds culminated in an unforgettable production, leaving the company debating: Was he a misunderstood genius or a brilliant con-artist? Accompanied by recollections from Hopkins, Dale and others, along with photographs and documents that bring the key players to life, this unique diary provides a snapshot of a crucial period in the history of the National Theatre.

Talking Theatre

Author : Richard Eyre
ISBN : 1848421389
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 36. 45 MB
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This House

Author : James Graham
ISBN : 9781472507020
Genre : Drama
File Size : 76. 90 MB
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This country doesn't need a constitution, never has, never will. We have History as our guide. In tough times, the British do what we have always done. We muddle through. This House is a timely and relevant political comedy, exploring Westminster and the 1974 hung parliament. In the run-up to the General Election pressure mounts as squabbling whips attempt to attract key regional votes. As it becomes clear the results will be closely balanced, the play tracks the formation, perils and consequences of a coalition government, including the compromises, conflicts and power games all in the interest of gaining control of Parliament. With well-paced, witty and waspish dialogue, This House playfully explores the childish digs and chauvinistic attitudes that riddle political life. Award-winning playwright James Graham combines comedy with comment in this portrayal of the strain between the thinking individual, the pressure to toe the part line and the end goal of winning government.

Theatre Writings

Author : Kenneth Tynan
ISBN : UOM:39015069357013
Genre : Dramatic criticism
File Size : 73. 22 MB
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The best of Tynan's theatre criticism, selected and edited by his biographer Dominic Shellard - with a foreword by Tom Stoppard. Kenneth Tynan was the 20th century's most influential theatre critic. Famous above all for championing the Angry Young Men at the Royal Court and for heralding Brecht, Beckett and Pinter, his writing was itself a 'high-definition performance' - stylish, discerning and scintillatingly witty. This volume collects over 100 of his reviews, including his astonishingly accurate assessments of the first ever performances of Waiting for Godot; Cat on a Hot Tin Roof; A View from the Bridge; The Entertainer; A Taste of Honey; and Beyond the Fringe. Also included are articles on such topics as Broadway musicals, censorship, Bertolt Brecht and, his pet hobby-horse, the need for a National Theatre, where he was to be Olivier's right-hand man.

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