RSC celebrates Harold Pinter's birthday

4 October 2011

Royal Shakespeare Company celebrates Harold Pinter's birthday and his historical links with the company as part ofthe RSC 50 season.

The RSC's 50th Birthday season continues with a programme of events spotlighting the company's 'back catalogue' of commissioning new writing throughout the last five decades.

During the week of 10 October, coinciding with what would have been Harold Pinter's 81st birthday, the Swan Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon hosts two public events which include talks and readings, and a full day of practical workshops for A Level Students – all to celebrate his work and connections with the company for which he wrote six plays.

David Farr's critically acclaimed RSC production of Pinter's The Homecoming (which premiered at the RSC in 1964) continues to play in repertoire in the Swan Theatre until 15 October 2011.

Harold Pinter's birthday celebration
Monday 10 October
7.30pm, Swan Theatre
Tickets from £10

To celebrate the decade in which Harold Pinter wrote six plays for the RSC (1961-1971). The evening will be a script in hand performance of The Collection (1961) and Landscape (1967), and an insight into Pinter's writing process during his years at the RSC. Ramin Gray directs the evening with actors including Juliet Stevenson, Hattie Morahan, David Dawson and Ben Miles.

Harold Pinter at the RSC
Saturday 15 October
7.30pm, Swan Theatre
Tickets from £12

Lady Antonia Fraser will be in conversation with RSC Associate Director David Farr about her life with Harold Pinter and her memoir 'Must You Go?' The evening will begin with a script-in-hand performance of Pinter's 1996 two hander Ashes to Ashes with Lindsay Duncan and Finbar Lynch (directed by David Farr).

Education workshop
Friday 14 October
10am- 4pm £30 (£25 to RSC Education Members)

There will also be an education workshop with director Joe Harmston in which he shares his experience of directing Pinter's texts based on his working relationship with the writer as director, actor and playwright.
'Bollocks to it!' was the advice Pinter gave Harmston when they were discussing what to do about a 'pause' in the script of The Hothouse. Harmston subsequently directed the writer in the critically-acclaimed revivals of The Lover and The Collection at The Donmar as well as being his Associate Director for a number of years.

For further information on these and all RSC 50 Events, please contact philippa.harland@rsc.org.uk or 020 7845 0512

Notes to Editors: 

  • The RSC Literary Department is generously supported by THE DRUE HEINZ TRUST
  • Since 1961 the Royal Shakespeare Company has produced over 200 living writers alongside Shakespeare's work, with the classical and contemporary influencing each other every step of the way.
  • The Comedy Theatre in Panton Street, London W1 is to be renamed in Harold Pinter's honour on 13 October 2011.
  • The PEN/Pinter Prize was established in 2009 by the writers' charity English PEN in memory of the Nobel-winning playwright Harold Pinter. The Prize is awarded annually to a British writer or a writer resident in Britain of outstanding literary merit who, in the words of Harold Pinter's Nobel speech, casts an 'unflinching, unswerving' gaze upon the world, and shows a 'fierce intellectual determination … to define the real truth of our lives and our societies'. The prize is shared with an imprisoned writer of courage selected by English PEN's Writers in Prison Committee in association with David Hare. This half of the prize is awarded to someone who has been persecuted for speaking out about their beliefs. The winner will be announced at the public event on 10 October where they will accept their prize alongside David Hare. For further information, please contact rachel@colmangetty.co.uk

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