Author Topic: Harold Pinter and Noel Coward  (Read 5654 times)

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Offline Iain Fisher

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Re: Harold Pinter and Noel Coward
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2008, 01:20:43 AM »
More Coward and Pinter.

I just saw Coward's Hay Fever by Tower Theatre Company in London.  The programme notes by Tom Tillery quote Coward as saying "my dialogue was becoming more natural and less elaborate and I was beginning to concentrate more on the comedy values of a situation rather than the comedy values of the actual lines".

Pinter doesn't aim for comedy (though the plays are funny) but just like Coward for Pinter the meaning of the words does not match either what is said or the reality of the situation.

Incidentally the BBC have issued a Noel Coward box set with lots of the plays both from television and radio.  Good value for money.

Iain
« Last Edit: November 19, 2008, 06:06:25 PM by Iain Fisher »

Offline Iain Fisher

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Re: Harold Pinter and Noel Coward
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2008, 10:34:09 PM »
The programme of The Homecoming at the Almeida Theatre, London quotes a letter from Noel Coward to Harold Pinter, dated 21 Aug 1965

"... I have just read The Homecoming twice through... It reads as well if not better than it plays.  Your writing absolutely fascinates me.  It is entirely unlike everyone else's.  You cheerfully break every rule of the theatre that I was brought up to believe in, except the cardinal one of never being boring for a split-second.  I love your choice of words, your resolute refusal to explain everything and the arrogant but triumphal demands you make on the audience...".

I knew Pintere liked Coward's work, I didn't know Coward admired, Pinter.

Iain

Offline Iain Fisher

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Harold Pinter and Noel Coward
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2008, 11:34:08 PM »
I just saw a couple of Noel Coward plays (Present Laughter and Still Life) and a couple of Pinter plays (The Collection and The Lover) and the influence of Coward on Pinter was very clear.  Many of the lines from the Pinter plays could be Noel Coward lines.  Both have a stilted elegance and beauty.

And in terms of structure The Lover initially could be a Noel Coward play.  Betrayal and Brief Encounter (a film script by Coward but based on a play) would be an interesting pairing.

Iain