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About Stoppard

Faber and Faber

In About Stoppard, Jim Hunter charts the work of a leading living dramatist who has brought delight to the world's theatres for more than forty years. The book presents a series of new interviews, with Tom Stoppard himself and with the practitioners who put his work on stage, such as directors Peter Wood, Trevor Nunn and Richard Eyre, lighting and set designers, and actors Felicity Kendal, John Wood, Essie Davis, Stephen Dillane and Simon Russell Beale. There's also a wealth of digest material and an extensive introduction which places Stoppard's plays in context, making this volume an indispensable guide for anyone interested in the work of this sensational playwright.

The Absence of War

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

The Absence of War offers a meditation on the classic problems of leadership, and is the third part of a critically acclaimed trilogy of plays (Racing Demon, Murmuring Judges) about British institutions.

Its unsparing portrait of a Labour Party torn between past principles and future prosperity, and of a deeply sympathetic leader doomed to failure, made the play hugely controversial and prophetic when it was first presented at the National Theatre, London, in 1993.

Acapulco

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

At the bar in the Acapulco Plaza Hotel, a group of film actors on location try to find ways of filling their time.

Developed from Berkoff’s experiences on the set of Rambo II, Acapulco offers a reflection on the nature of art and being an artist.

Acapulco premiered at the Odyssey Theatre, Los Angeles, in August 1990.

Actor

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

An actor speaks on the phone to his agents, his parents, and his fellow thespians, battling with rejection, expectation, disappointment and self-pity.

A short monologue which delves into the heart of the acting industry, Actor humorously and poignantly portrays the trying life of being a struggling artist.

Actor premiered at the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh, in January 1984.

After Darwin

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

Millie, a director, discusses with her actors, Ian and Tom, how to interpret two famous historical figures from the nineteenth century. It's 1831. The naturalist Charles Darwin is invited to travel with Robert Fitzroy into uncharted waters off the coast of South America aboard 'The Beagle'. Their five year journey is fraught with philosophical and personal tensions. Fitzroy, a staunch Christian, has faith in the unquestionable authority of the Bible; Darwin begins to explore a more radical vision, his theory of natural selection. A meditation on history and human relationships, After Darwin links past and present through these five characters, and raises timeless questions about faith, friendship and how we interpret the past.

After Darwin was first performed in July 1998, at Hampstead Theatre, London.

After Easter

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

After Easter is not a political play, rather a psychological play – inevitably funny. It is a contemporary portrait of a woman who reaches that point in her life when she will either grow or fade, when she will either continue to live in her lesser personality or make that inner marriage which will allow her to enter the mainstream of her larger existence, and, hopefully, swim.

The exile, Greta, having turned away from everything that once could have been called her identity – including her religion – allows the ghosts to call her home to the north of Ireland and to her family. In doing so she finds herself confronting the identity that she has wilfully excluded for so long.

Afterplay

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

1920s Moscow, a small run-down café. Uncle Vanya's niece, Sonya Serebriakova, now in her forties, is the only customer. Until the arrival of Andrey Prozorov, the put-upon brother from Three Sisters.

Afterplay revisits the lives of two characters from Anton Chekhov's plays. It was first produced, with The Bear (also after Chekhov), at the Gate Theatre, Dublin, in March 2002.

The American Pilot

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

A spy plane crash-lands in a remote valley in a distant country. The local villagers take in the wounded pilot and argue his fate. The American Pilot explores the way the world sees America and the way America sees the world.

The American Pilot premiered with the RSC at The Other Place, Stratford-upon-Avon, in April 2005.

Amongst Friends

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

Journalist Lara and her ex-MP and crime-writer husband Richard are happy and successful. Having moved to a fashionable gated community they invite their old neighbours Caitlin and Joe to dinner. When the security system fails, the food is delivered by a stranger and the dinner party takes quite a different turn.

April De Angelis's darkly comic social satire Amongst Friends premiered at the Hampstead Theatre, London, in May 2009.

Amy's View

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

It is 1979. Esme Allen is a well-known West End actress at just the moment when the West End is ceasing to offer actors a regular way of life. The visit of her young daughter, Amy, with a new boyfriend sets in train a series of events which only find their shape eighteen years later. A generational play about the long term struggle between a strong mother and her loving daughter, Amy's View mixes love, death and the theatre in a way which is both heady and original.

Amy's View was first performed at the National Theatre, London, in June 1997, and transferred to the Aldwych Theatre in January 1998.

Faber and Faber is one of the great independent publishing houses. The company was established in 1929 by Geoffrey Faber, who recruited T. S. Eliot to the firm that year. They set the precedent for more than eighty years of literary excellence. Faber’s celebrated reputation for contemporary drama was seeded in 1956, a year that saw the premiere of John Osborne’s theatrical bombshell Look Back in Anger and the publication of Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot. Tom Stoppard joined the ranks in the sixties, and in the decades that followed many other brilliant dramatists have found their home here, including Alan Ayckbourn, Alan Bennett, Brian Friel, David Hare, Frank McGuinness and Timberlake Wertenbaker. The legacy continues with an exciting list of younger playwrights. Faber believes that great plays make great literature. With a unique heritage, including plays by three Nobel Laureates, Harold Pinter, Samuel Beckett and T. S. Eliot, and a thriving front list, the company remains a true pioneer of drama in the modern age.