John Blakemore is a solitary boy who finds it impossible either to understand or adapt to the ways of the school. His adolescent earnestness put off teacher and pupil alike. And now suddenly he seems to be in danger of losing his only friend.David Hare's emotional new play, written at the invitation of the Rattigan estate as a response to The Browning Version, is a meditation on faith, learning and teenage friendship, played against the backdrop of a Britain still fighting to maintain an established rule.Collected with South Downs is the text of Hare's lecture Mere Fact, Mere Fiction, delivered to the Royal Society of Literature in 2010. In a famous defence of documentary theatre, the author celebrates the power of metaphor to transform factual quite as much as fictional material.
A young lawyer's involvement in her first case leads her through a criminal justice system - police, courts and prisons - which is cracking at the seams.Murmuring Judges is the second play in David Hare's highly acclaimed trilogy about British institutions. Racing Demon, which won four awards as Play of the Year in 1990, was the first part of the trilogy and examined the Church. The Absence of War, a play about the Labour Party, completed the trilogy.
Oscar Wilde's philosophy leads him on a path to destruction. The Judas Kiss describes two pivotal moments: the day Wilde decides to stay in England and face imprisonment, and the night when the lover for whom he risked everything betrays him.With a burning sense of outrage, David Hare presents the consequences of an uncompromisingly moral position in a world defined by fear and conformity.Originally produced in the West End and on Broadway, this new edition coincides with a 2012 revival.'Superbly written... Hare has taken a history and pieced it together with heroic grace... Vastly rich, sophisticated and heartbreaking.' Time Out, New York
This second volume of plays by David Hare contains work from the 1970s and 1980s which confirmed him as one of the major contemporary playwrights in the English language. It includes Fanshen, his remarkable 1975 play which focused on the Chinese Revolution with Brechtian subtlety, his screenplay for Saigon: Year of the Cat, The Secret Rapture, his biting portrait of a family in crisis, and the plays A Map of the World and The Bay at Nice. The collection is introduced by the author.
Schnitzler described Reigen, his loose series of sexual sketches, as 'completely unprintable'. The company that first presented them was prosecuted for obscenity in 1921. It was only when Max Ophuls made his famous film in 1950 that the work became better known as La Ronde. Now David Hare has re-set these circular scenes of love and betrayal in the present day. Using as much imaginative freedom in his turn as Ophuls did fifty years ago, and with just two actors playing all of the parts, Hare has created a fascinating landscape of dream and longing which seems both eternal and bang-up-to-date.
'Life being what it is, one dreams of revenge.'Gauguin's aphorism serves as the motto for this morality tale of two women, both in their sixties, whose lives are interwoven in ways neither of them yet understand. Madeline Palmer is a retired curator, living alone on the Isle of Wight. One day to her door comes Angela Beale, a woman she has met only once, who is now enjoying sudden success, late in life, as a popular novelist. The progress of a single night comes fascinatingly to echo the hidden course of their lives.
Nothing is more important to a modern political party than fund-raising. But the values of the donors can't always coincide with the professed beliefs of the party. And family scandal within the cabinet has the potential to throw both the money-raisers and the money-spenders into chaos.This richly imagined ensemble play about British public life looks at the way business, media and politics are now intertwined to nobody's advantage, as, in an unforgiving world, one character after another passes through Gethsemane.Gethsemane, David Hare's fourteenth original play for the National Theatre, London, premiered in November 2008.
David Hare's play, My Zinc Bed, continues the run of work in which he has sought to describe the atmosphere of contemporary Britain. A successful entrepreneur, Victor Quinn, employs a young poet, Paul Peplow, to decorate the legend of his fast-growing Internet business. Nothing prepares either man for an outcome which makes for a compelling story of romance and addiction.
Nadia Blye is a young American war reporter turned academic who teaches Political Studies at Yale. A brief holiday with her boyfriend brings her into contact with a kind of Englishman whose culture and background is a surprise and a challenge, both to her and to her relationship. For thirty five years, David Hare has written plays which catch the flavour of our times, the interconnection between our secret motives and our public politics. Now, at last, he writes about an American, seeking to illustrate how life has subtly changed for so many people in the West in the new century.The Vertical Hour received its world premiere at the Music Box Theater, Broadway, on November 30, 2006, and received its UK premiere at the Royal Court Theatre, London, on 17 January 2008.
This play ran at the National Theatre, London, throughout 1978 and the New York production in the autumn of 1982 was equally well received. In counterpointing the experiences of an Englishwoman helping the French Resistance during the war with her life in the following twenty years, the author offers a unique view of postwar history, as well as making a powerful statement about changing values and the collapse of ideals embodied in a single life.Plenty is also a major film produced by Edward R. Pressman and Joseph Papp with Mark Seiler as Executive Producer, and directed by Fred Schepisi from a screenplay by David Hare. The cast, headed by double Oscar-winner Meryl Streep, includes Charles Dance, Tracy Ullman, John Gielgud, Sting, Ian McKellen and Sam Neill.
How do you fight without hate?Racing Demon reveals the struggle of four clergymen to make sense of their mission.David Hare's play opened at the National Theatre, London, in 1990 to universal acclaim, and won four awards as Play of the Year. Racing Demon was the first part of David Hare's trilogy of plays about British institutions; Murmuring Judges and The Absence of War completed the trilogy.
'My whole life, it's been assumed, Western civilisation is an old bitch gone in the teeth. And so people say, go to Israel. Because in Israel at least people are fighting. In Israel, they're fighting for something they believe in.' Via DolorosaIn 1997, after many invitations, the 50-year-old British playwright resolved finally to visit the 50-year-old State of Israel. The resulting play, written to be performed by the author himself, offers a meditation on an extraordinary trip to both Israel and the Palestinian territory, which leaves Hare questioning his own values as searchingly as the powerful beliefs of those he met. Accompanying Via Dolorosa is the 1996 lecture When Shall We Live?, which also addresses questions of art and faith. Originally given in Westminster Abbey as the Eric Symes Memorial Lecture, it attracted record correspondence when an abridged version was published in the Daily Telegraph.
In 1991, before an election they did not expect to win, the Conservative government made a fateful decision to privatize the railways. As a result, the taxpayer subsidizes rail more lavishly then ever before. In The Permanent Way, David Hare, working with actors from the Out of Joint Company, tells the intricate, madcap story of a dream gone sour, by gathering together the first-hand accounts of those most intimately involved - from every level of the system. 'A drama that stirs indignation and pity in equal measure, political theatre that transcends the old conflicts between Right and Left to condemn the whole mindset and attitudes of those allegedly running our nation's affairs. It is, by a mile, the most significant and revealing new play of the year. If you want to understand why Britain isn't working, you need to see The Permanent Way.' Daily Telegraph'A compelling, fast-moving and astringently witty collage of first-hand testimonies and conflicting points of view... The picture that emerges with great force from these vivid, eloquently juxtaposed vignettes is of a debased culture that sets less store by the expertise that comes from intimate knowledge of a subject than by vacuous so-called management skills.' Independent'A vitally necessary piece of theatre.' Guardian
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.
Stuff happens... And it's untidy, and freedom's untidy, and free people are free to make mistakes and commit crimes and do bad things.'The famous response of Donald Rumsfeld, American Secretary of Defense, to the looting of Baghdad, at a press conference on 11 April 2003, provides the title for a new play, specially written for the Olivier Theatre, about the extraordinary process leading up to the invasion of Iraq.How does the world settle its differences, now there is only one superpower? What happens to leaders risking their credibility with sceptical publics? From events which have dominated international headlines for the last two years David Hare has fashioned both a historical narrative and a human drama about the frustrations of power and the limits of diplomacy.Stuff Happens premiered at the National Theatre, London, in 2004 season and has subsequently been performed around the world. In April 2006, it was given its New York premiere at the Public Theater in this new, slightly updated text.
This is a new collection of some of David Hare's finest work, including Skylight (Winner of the Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Play, 1996), Amy's View, The Judas Kiss and My Zinc Bed.
In 1997 the 50-year-old playwright David Hare decided to visit the 50-year-old state of Israel and write a play - Via Dolorosa - about the conflict. He then chose to become the actor of his own play and set about learning to act the monologue for an uninterrupted 95 minutes on stage. Acting Up is a diary of the ups and downs of that learning curve as well as an insight into what it is actors, directors, producers and stage staff actually do in rehearsals. Hare's hilarious diary of his experience on both sides of the Atlantic tells of his difficulties in coming to terms with his terrifying change of career, but also grapples with more serious questions about the nature of acting itself.
An elderly antiquarian bookseller has just died at his home in the country. His two daughters come to attend to things. Isobel, who has been nursing him, is a partner in a small design firm. Marion is in politics - already a junior minister. It is Marion's profession to provide answers, and to back those who offer solutions, but not all human situations yield to a professional approach - least of all when they involve their junior step-mother Katherine.In this elegantly constructed play, a mordant comedy of manners deepens into a painfully unsparing examination of the consequences of applying principled pragmatism to human feelings.'David Hare has written one of the best English plays since the war and established himself as the finest British dramatist of his generation.' John Peter, Sunday Times
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.
The leading British writer-director of his generation, David Hare is also one of the most productive. The last two years have seen the outstanding success of two stage plays, The Secret Rapture and Racing Demon, and the release of two films, Paris by Night and Strapless.The pieces collected here, written left-handed, form both a concealed professional autobiography and a lucid commentary on his work.
What is a political playwright? Does theatre have any direct effect on society? Why choose to work in a medium which speaks to so few? Is theatre itself facing oblivion? All frequent questions addressed to David Hare over the last thirty-five years, as his work has taken him from the travelling fringe to the National Theatre, from seasons on Broadway to performances in prisons, church halls and on bare floors.Since 1978, Hare has sought uniquely to address these and other questions in occasional lectures given both in Britain and abroad. Now, for the first time, these lectures are collected together with some of his more recent prose pieces about God, Iraq, Israel/Palestine and the privatisation of the railways.Bringing to the lectern the same wit, insight and gift for the essential for which his plays are known, Hare presents the distilled result of a lifetime's sustained thinking about art and politics.'The foremost theatrical chronicler of contemporary British life.' New York Times 'Our best writer of contemporary drama.' Sunday Times
It's not just that rich people don't know what they've got. They don't even know what they throw away. India is beginning to prosper. But beyond the luxury hotels surrounding Mumbai airport is an obstacle, amakeshift slum. It's home to foul mouthed Zehrunisa and her garbage sorting son Abdul, entrepreneurs both. Sunil, twelve, picks plastic. Manju, schoolteacher, hopes to be the settlement's first woman to gain a degree. Asha, go-to woman, exploits every scam to become a first-class person. And Fatima, One Leg, is about to make an accusation that will destroy herself and shatter the neighbourhood.Katherine Boo spent three years under the flight-path, recording the lives of Annawadi's diverse inhabitants. Now from Boo's book, which won the National Book Award for Non-Fiction in 2012, David Hare has fashioned an epic play for the stage which details the ingenious and sometimes violent ways in which the poor and disadvantaged negotiate with corruption to seek a handhold on capitalism's lowest rungs.David Hare's stage adaptation of Behind the Beautiful Forevers premiered at the National Theatre, London, in November 2014.
David Hare's trilogy of plays - Racing Demon, Murmuring Judges, The Absence of War - first presented at the National Theatre, London, in 1993, examines the crises facing three great British institutions - the Church, the Law and the Labour Party. In order to learn about these organisations, Hare amassed a body of hard research from first-hand interviews with many of the people involved: from vicars to high-ranking policemen, from judges to MPs. Asking Around presents a judicious selection of those interviews and also includes a commentary by Hare, describing how he threaded his way through the complex structures of Church, Law and Politics.