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RONALD HARWOOD came to England from South Africa in 1951 and studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art before joining Donald Wolfit’s Shakespeare Company at the King’s Theatre, Hammersmith. He began writing in 1960 and has published several novels, including Articles of Faith and Home, both prize winners. As well as a biography of Sir Donald Wolfit he has edited books on the theatre and written many plays, including the West End and Broadway hit The Dresser. The film version received five Academy Award nominations, including one for Best Screenplay. In 1984 he wrote and presented a 13-part history of the theatre for the BBC - All the World’s a Stage - and in the same year published The Ages of Gielgud, which celebrated Sir John Gielgud’s 80th birthday. More recently his screenplay for Roman Polanski’s film The Pianist won several awards including an Oscar.


After The Lions by Ronald Harwood publisher Amber Lane Press
ISBN: 9780906399415
8.99 £7.99
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Ronald Harwood
After The Lions

Set in France during the First World War, After the Lions takes as its subject the legendary Sarah Bernhardt, portrayed here towards the end of her illustrious career. “She wants to go on acting “ remonstrates her secretary Pitou, “Why? Hasn’t she had enough applause, fame, lovers? She wants to go on until she drops - and with one leg she probably will.” An invitation to tour America arrives - but there’s a catch... First presented at the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester starring Dorothy Tutin. (Cast 4m, 3f)


Ronald Harwood
Another Time

It is the early 1950s in Sea point, Cape Town. Leonard Lands, aged seventeen and the only child of immigrant parents, is already an outstandingly gifted pianist. It is clear that he must go to Europe to study if he is to achieve the success that his talent demands. Thirty-five years later, in London, Leonard reaches another turning point in his life. What price has his single-minded devotion to his music exacted on his relationships with his family? Another Time was first produced at Wyndham’s Theatre, London, in 1989. It was directed by Elijah Moshinsky and starred Albert Finney and Christien Anholt. (Cast 3m, 2f)

“Ronald Harwood’s new play is about the politics of the world, the politics of the family and the politics of the heart ... this is one of the most vigorously intelligent and sensitive new plays in the West End for a long time...”
~
John Peter, The Sunday Times

“...it shines with honest understanding, with true compassion...”
~ Jack Tinker, The Daily Mail

“...when he writes from the pressure of personal experience (as here and in The Dresser) his work has a spontaneous life.”
~ Michael Billington, The Guardian

Another Time is a solid, intelligent piece of work ... Harwood has a sure sense of both the comedy and the pathos of his subject.”
~ John Gross, Sunday Telegraph

“About the only thing that’s weak about Ronald Harwood’s new comedy is the title...”
~ Hugo Williams, Sunday Correspondent

 

 

Another Time by Ronald Harwood published by Amber Lane Press
ISBN: 9780906399989
£7.99
£8.99
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The Deliberate Death of a Polish Priest by Ronald Harwood publisher Amber Lane Press
ISBN: 9780906399637
8.99 £7.99
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Ronald Harwood
The Deliberate Death of a Polish Priest

Father Jerzy Popieluszko was more than a priest. He was an outspoken pacifist, opponent of social repression and supporter of the outlawed Solidarity movement. Ronald Harwood’s play is a dramatisation of the trial of four Polish Security Service officers responsible for the kidnapping and murder of the Warsaw priest on the night of 19th October 1984. (Cast 12m, 3f)

“From the particular tragedy of Popieluszko’s vicious murder, it opens up a whole can of much more universal, moral and political worms... The Deliberate Death of a Polish Priest is a theatrical success - a harrowing, stimulating and worthwhile one.”
~ Nick St George, BBC Radio London

“Skilfully based by Ronald Harwood on the transcripts of the trial ... [it] tells a story both terrible and puzzling ...”
~ Francis King, Sunday Telegraph

“...[an] unpretentiously elegant account of the trial...”
~ Benedict Nightingale, New Statesman

“The play is dropped into our pool of knowledge of Poland ... a cold, dispassionate piece of deeply passionate theatre.”
~ Helen Rose, Time Out

 


Ronald Harwood
The Dresser

The British theatre today owes a lot to the tradition of the actor manager, often a powerful, tyrannical figure, who demanded hard work, devotion and loyalty from the members of his company. Touring the provinces, month in month out, and enduring third-rate digs and long, uncomfortable railway journeys, required a special kind of strength and dedication. In Ronald Harwood's play it is the character of the dresser who is the pivot for these ideals, a perpetuator of the myth, struggling to keep the tradition alive. Originally starring Tom Courtenay and Freddie Jones, the play's 2005 West End revival following a successful provincial tour starred Nicholas Lyndhurst and Julian Glover. (Cast 8+m, 3f)

"A 25th anniversary revival of Ronald Harwood's The Dresser at the Duke of York's Theatre, finds it in excellent shape. Its emotional impact is undiminished, its entertainment value undimmed. It continues to perch, precipitously but successfully, on a fine line between serious drama and farce."
~
John Gross, Sunday Telegraph

"Anyone who loves the theatre can't fail to love this gently perceptive and movingly recreated view from the wings and dressing rooms of the dying fall of a once-great actor-manager who has lived for the stage, and the man who has lived for him for the past 16 years. This tale of their mutual co-dependence is lovingly charted in Ronald Harwood's script..."
~
Mark Shenton, Sunday Express

"...a wonderfully affectionate and intelligent play about the theatre. "
~
Michael Billington, The Guardian

"This is a beguiling portrait of the vanities and insecurities of two men offered little by the real world. Their love's never acknowledged, but Sir's fetish for fame, and Norman's fetish for self-sacrifice makes them the perfect match."
~
Rachel Halliburton, Time Out London

"...a riotously funny parody of luvvies at their most ludicrous, shot through with just enough truth even to make an audience wince as it giggles. ...apart from The Entertainer, this is the best play written since World War Two about the backstage life."
~
Sheridan Morley, Express

"Ronald Harwood joined Sir Donald Wolfit's Shakespeare Company as an actor and then as dresser to the old-style actor-manager. No wonder his marvellous play, The Dresser, is such a pungent, poignant, funny and utterly authentic portrayal of a life in the theatre in wartime England. Now 25 years old, the play is a classic."
~
Georgina Brown, Mail on Sunday

 

The Dresser by Ronald Harwood published by Amber Lane Press
ISBN: 9780906399217
£8.99
£9.99
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J.J. Farr by Ronald Harwood publisher Amber Lane Press
ISBN: 9780906399880
8.99 £7.99
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Ronald Harwood
J.J. Farr

The theme of this play is religious faith in crisis. J.J. Farr, a former Roman Catholic priest, has been held hostage and tortured by arab terrorists. On his return to England he finds refuge among a community of ex-priests where the details of his ordeal are gradually revealed. J.J. Farr was first presented by Robert Fox and Memorial Films at the Theatre Royal, Bath, in October 1987 and subsequently at the Phoenix Theatre, London in November 1987, directed by Ronald Eyre and starring Albert Finney.

“Not since Graham Greene gave up agonising about the Catholic dilemma on stage back in the 1950s can there have been a drama so single-minded in its determination to discuss the loss of religious faith and its rediscovery ... elegantly and sharply written...”
~ Sheridan Morley, Punch

J.J. Farr ... is gripping; it exerts the hold of all deeply felt personal argument...”
~ Sunday Times

“...could not be bettered for its mixture of comedy, drama and debate.”
~ Sunday Telegraph


Ronald Harwood
Interpreters

A love story with a Russian flavour. Two interpreters, Nadia Ogilvie-Smith and Viktor Belaev, meet in the Soviet department of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London. Balaev is due to return to Moscow with his delegation when he tells Nadia of his plan to defect to the West. Originally starring Maggie Smith and Edward Fox. (Cast 4m, 2f)

"A clever, witty and sparkling comedy"
~
Milton Shulman, London Standard

"Wholly original, witty and literate"
~
Jim Hiley, The Listener

 

 

 

 

Interpreters by Ronald Harwood published by Amber Lane Press
ISBN: 9780906399675
£7.99
£8.99
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The Ordeal of Gilbert Pinfold by Ronald Harwood publisher Amber Lane Press
ISBN: 9780906399422
£8.99 £7.99
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Ronald Harwood
The Ordeal of Gilbert Pinfold

In 1954, Evelyn Waugh, reacting against a bitterly cold winter, and suffering from bouts of rheumatism and insomnia and forgetfulness, set off alone on a sea voyage to Ceylon. On his return to England, he confided to a friend, ‘I haven’t seen you for a long time, but then I’ve seen so few people because - did you know? - I went mad.’ By February 1956 he felt strong enough to describe in detail what happened during the voyage. The result was a short novel, ‘The Ordeal of Gilbert Pinfold’. In this dramatisation Ronald Harwood skilfully recreates the ordeal of a man living through a nightmare of intrigue and conspiracy, beset by hallucinations and voices in the air. Originally starring Michael Hordern. (Cast 12m, 4+f)

 

 

 

 


Ronald Harwood
Sir Donald Wolfit

A biography of Sir Donald Wolfit (1902-68) – one of the very last of the old-style actor-managers. Acclaimed by many as the greatest of all the Lears, he was a virtuoso performer par excellence but as such was destined to remain firmly rooted in the 'unfashionable' theatre. No actor of his generation was surrounded by more controversy. He was hated and loved, disliked and admired, shunned and welcomed. He was large and yet petty, compassionate and cruel, magnanimous and mean. But above all, he was an actor, from the crown of his head to the soles of his feet. When Wolfit died he left to his ‘good friend’ Ronald Harwood the sum of £50 “in the hope that he will undertake some form of biography of my work in the theatre...”. This frank and affectionate account of his life also presents a brilliant conspectus of the British theatre of the first half of the 20th century.

"Frankly, affectionately, with clear but sympathetic eyes, Mr Harwood movingly tells his triumphant, tragic story."
~
Harold Hobson, The Sunday Times

 

Sir Donald Wolfit by Ronald Harwood published by Amber Lane Press
ISBN: 9780906399439
302 pages
£9.99
10.99
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Tramway Road by Ronald Harwood publisher Amber Lane Press
ISBN: 9780906399583
£8.99 £7.99
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Ronald Harwood
Tramway Road

The play is set in 1951, one year after the Population Registration Act was passed in South Africa. Tramway Road had a special notoriety for all those who lived in Sea Point, a white residential suburb of Cape Town. It also exerts its influence over all the characters in this play: an expatriate English couple, Arthur and Dora Langley; Emil, a young man with dreams of becoming an actor in London; and Jacob, a Cape Coloured house servant who is king of his local Coon Carnival troupe. Tramway Road, and all that it represents, inevitably shatters their hopes, their peace and their ideals. Tramway Road was first performed at the Lyric Theatre in 1984 with Freddie Jones, Richard E. Grant, William Vanderpuye, and Annette Crosbie.
(Cast 3m, 1f)

“In his touching new play [Ronald Harwood] catches a rare and powerful mood of British expatriates and South African meritocrats locked in a landscape neither party reveres.”
~ Michael Coveney, Financial Times

Tramway Road ... demonstrates how fragile are the fortifications of liberal and bookish conscience when they are assaulted by the forces of racist intolerance.”
~ Milton Shulman, Standard

“Mr Harwood is very good at the pathos of exile ... The play offers a totally plausible, splendidly comic picture of the two shambling rootless English ex-pats.” ~ Michael Billington, The Guardian

“...[in] this thoughtful, humane play ... Mr Harwood has something telling to say about a tragic situation.”
~ Francis King, Sunday Telegraph

 


You can buy RONALD HARWOOD's plays via this site at a discount.

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