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Howard Brenton

HOWARD BRENTON

  (1942 - )

Nationality:    British
email:    n/a     Website:    n/a

Literary Agent:    Casarotto Ramsay and Associates Ltd  

Howard was born in Portsmouth in 1942. He and his wife Jane live in South London and they have two sons. His many plays include CHRISTIe IN LOVe (Portable Theatre, 1969); ReVeNGe (Theatre Upstairs, 1969); MAGNIFICeNCe (Royal Court Theatre, 1973); the CHURCHILL PLAY (Nottingham Playhouse, 1974 twice revived by the RSC 1978 and 1988); BLOODY POeTRY (Foco Novo 1984 and the Royal Court Theatre, 1987); WeAPONS OF HAPPINeSS (National Theatre, winner of the evening Standard Award 1976); ePSOM DOWNS (Joint Stock Theatre, 1977); SORe THROATS (RSC, 1978); the ROMANS IN BRITAIN (National Theatre, 1980, revived Sheffield Crucible Theatre 2006); THIRTeeNTH NIGHT (RSC, 1981); the GeNIUS (1983), GReeNLAND (1988) and BeRLIN BeRTIe (1992) all presented by the Royal Court; KIT's PLAY (RADA Jerwood Theatre, 2000); PAUL (National Theatre 2005, nominated for the Olivier Award, 2006); IN eXTReMIS (Shakespeare's Globe, 2006); the RAGGeD TROUSeReD PHILANTROPISTS (Chichester Festival Theatre/ Liverpool everyman, 2010) and ANNe BOLeYN (Shakespeare's Globe 2010/2011).

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below is a list of Howard Brenton's plays - click on a Play Title for more information

        #aiww: the Arrest of Ai Weiwei         55 Days         Anne Boleyn         Berlin Bertie         Bloody Poetry         Brassneck         Christie In Love         Churchill Play, The         Collateral Damage         Consequences         Conversations In Exile         Dances Of Death, The         Danton's Death         Deeds         Doctor Scroggie's War         Drawing the Line         Education Of Skinny Spew, The         England's Ireland         Epsom Downs         Eternal Love         Fart For Europe, A         Faust: Parts One And Two         Fruit         Gargantua         Genius, The         Gothic Triple Bill         Government Property         Greenland         Guffin, The         Gum And Goo         Heads         Hid (Hess Is Dead)         Hitler Dances         How Beautiful With Badges         In Extremis         Iranian Nights         It's My Criminal         Jedefrau         Kit         Ladder Of Fools         Lay By         Life Of Galileo, The         Magnificence         Measure For Measure         Moscow Gold         Mug         Nail Poems: 32 Haiku         Never So Good         Paul         Pravda         Ragged Trousered Philanthropists, The         Revenge         Romans In Britain, The         Saliva Milkshake, The         Scott Of the Antarctic: Or, What God Didn't See         Screens, The         Short Sharp Shock!, A         Sky Blue Life, A         Sleeping Policemen         Snogging Ken         Sore Throats         Thing, The         Thirteenth Night         Ugly Rumours         Wall Dog, The         Warwickgate         Weapons Of Happiness         Wesley         Winter, Daddykins



#aiww: the Arrest of Ai Weiwei

#aiww: the Arrest of Ai Weiwei
A timely play based on the true story of an imprisoned Nobel Laureate. On 3 April 2011, as he was boarding a flight to Taipei, the Chinese artist Ai Weiwei was arrested at Beijing Airport. Advised merely that his travel could damage state security, he was escorted to a van by officials, after which he disappeared for eighty-one days. On his release, the government claimed that his imprisonment related to tax evasion.

Notes:
Howard Brenton's play is based on Ai Weiwei's account in Barnaby Martin's book Hanging Man, in which he told the story of that imprisonment - by turns surreal, hilarious, and terrifying. A portrait of the artist in extreme conditions, it is also an affirmation of the centrality of art and freedom of speech in civilised society.

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  9            Female:  -            Other:  with doubling

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55 Days

55 Days
A gripping historical Drama that Dramatises a crucial moment of english history. December 1648. the Army has occupied London. Parliament votes not to put the imprisoned king on trial, so the Army moves against Westminster in the first and only military coup in english history. What follows over the next fifty-five days, as Cromwell seeks to compromise with a king who will do no such thing, is nothing less than the forging of a new nation, an entirely new world. Howard Brenton's play depicts the dangerous and Dramatic days when, in a country exhausted by Civil War, a few great men attempt to think the unthinkable: to create a country without a king.

Notes:
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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  13            Female:  2            Other:  -

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Anne Boleyn

Anne Boleyn
Anne Boleyn is traditionally seen as a pawn manipulated by an ambitious Father and his friends into the King's bed, or as a licentious predator, even a witch. But Brenton puts a very different anne - and her ghost - on the Globe stage. Witty and confident in her sexuality, she takes on the vicious world of Tudor Court politics.

Notes:
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Music:
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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  11            Female:  4            Other:  larger cast possible

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Berlin Bertie

Berlin Bertie
the downing of the Berlin Wall unites two sisters from east Berlin and their native London.

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Nick Hern Books, London, 1992   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  2            Female:  3            Other:  -

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Bloody Poetry

Synopsis:
Staged to critical acclaim in both New York and London, first at the Hampstead theatre in 1984 and subsequently in a revival at the Royal Court theatre in 1988, this is a portrayal of the lives of Shelley, Mary Shelley and Claire Clairemont. Set between the summers of 1816 and 1822 the play opens with their flight from england to Switzerland and Italy where, for the first time, they encounter Lord Byron.

Notes:
UK Tour And Hampstead theatre, London

1st Produced:
Leicester    1984

Company:
Foco Novo Theatre Company

1st Published:

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  3            Female:  3            Other:  voice

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Brassneck

Synopsis:
Property business in small town in Midlands expands world wide on death of founder, political corruption then bankruptcy leads to heroin importation

Notes:
written with David Hare (TV 1975)

1st Produced:
Playhouse, Nottingham    1973

Company:
-

1st Published:
Eyre Methuen, London, 1973   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  15            Female:  4            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Christie In Love

Synopsis:
Police search for famous murder's, John Christie, victims in garden. Confronted by Christie arisen they goad and then re-hang him.

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
in "Christie in Love and Other Plays, Methuen, London, 1970   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play 11 scenes

Parts:
Male:  3            Female:  -            Other:  -

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Churchill Play, The

Synopsis:
Churchill's hereditary syphilis used as a lampoon, "performed in the winter of 1984 by the internees of the Churchill Camp somewhere in england".

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Eyre Methuen, London, 1974   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Historical Drama

Parts:
Male:  17            Female:  3            Other:  -

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Collateral Damage

Synopsis:
War rages in the Balkans. While NaTO bombs Serbia, the Kosovan albanians are driven out of their homes. europe is divided. In homes everywhere, people debate the rights and wrongs of the war. This play reveals the results.

Notes:
written by Tariq Ali, Howard Brenton, Andy De La Tour

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Oberon, London, 1999   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  1            Female:  1            Other:  -

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Consequences

Synopsis:
eight playwrights play consequences in the 21stC as a last gasp for Foco Novo, killed by the government and the Arts Council

Notes:
written with Dunn, Griffiths, Ikoli, Sobol, Williams, Wilson, Wymark

1st Produced:
Croydon    1988

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Colaboration

Parts:
Male:  7            Female:  1            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Conversations In Exile

Synopsis:
topics on : Passports, order, fascism, the Weimar Republic etc lead to the foundation of a cockroach extermination business

Notes:
Original Playwright - Bertolt Brecht; Translation by David Dollenmayer

1st Produced:
UK Tour and Theatre Upstairs, Royal Court    1982

Company:
Foco Novo Theatre Company

1st Published:
in "theater XVII" No 2 Spring, 1986   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
adaptation

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

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Dances Of Death, The

Dances Of Death, The
A gripping new version of Strindberg's masterly, darkly hilarious depiction of the struggles and strains of marriage. Meet Edgar and Alice. Married for almost thirty years, theirs is a relationship of mutual explosive loathing. Strindberg's tale paints a compelling and bitterly funny portrait of a magnificently doomed couple, whose ongoing battle threatens not only their future, but that of their friends and children as well. Howard Brenton's Dances of Death includes both Part One and the rarely performed Part Two of this masterpiece of European theatre, condensed into a single two-act drama.

Notes:
Original Playwright - August Strindberg. From a literal translation by Agnes Broome

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Genre:
Adaptation

Parts:
Male:  4            Female:  2            Other:  -

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Danton's Death

Danton's Death
a study of Danton showing not so much his humanity as his existential exhaustion

Notes:
Original Playwright - Georg Buchner

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Methuen Drama    978-0413512604

Music:
-

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Genre:
adaptation

Parts:
Male:  24            Female:  6            Other:  -

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Deeds

Synopsis:
Baby dies from chemicals in Nuzzles Milk Powder, wife disappears,, husband jailed, wickedness all round.

Notes:
written with Griffiths, Cambell, Hare

1st Produced:
Playhouse, Nottingham    1978

Company:
-

1st Published:
Plays & Players, May/June, London, 1978   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Doctor Scroggie's War

Doctor Scroggie's War
An epic, hilarious and moving play that takes a sideways look at the First World War. 1915. Jack Twigg, twenty-one years old, enlists in the London Regiment and goes on a journey he never imagined - nor did the rest of the world. On his way, he meets the pioneering medic Harold Gillies, who saves his life and his sanity. And who is the mysterious Doctor Scroggy who appears at night in Gillies' hospital dispensing champagne to the patients?

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Nick Hern Books   978-1848424210

Music:
-

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Genre:
Drama

Parts:
Male:  11            Female:  5            Other:  doubling

Further Reference:

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Drawing the Line

Drawing the Line
London, 1947. Summoned by the Prime Minister from the Court where he is presiding judge, Cyril Radcliffe is given an unlikely mission. He is to travel to India, a country he has never visited, and, with limited survey information, no expert support and no knowledge of cartography, he is to draw the border which will divide the Indian sub-continent into two new Sovereign Dominions. To make matters even more challenging, he has only six weeks to complete the task. Wholly unsuited to his role, Radcliffe is unprepared for the dangerous whirlpool of political intrigue and passion into which he is plunged  untold consequences may even result from the illicit liaison between the Leader of the Congress Party and the Viceroys wife. . . As he begins to break under the pressure he comes to realise that he holds in his hands the fate of millions of people.

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:

Music:
-

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Genre:
historical drama

Parts:
Male:  13            Female:  4            Other:  some doubling

Further Reference:
-

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Education Of Skinny Spew, The

Synopsis:
Still in the womb Skinny Spew has adult wisdom, once born he drowns his parents for treating him as a moron. reverts to babyhood under rigours of "proper" education.

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
Bradford University, Bradford    1969

Company:
-

1st Published:
in "Christie in Love and Other Plays, Methuen, London, 1970   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
One act

Parts:
Male:  2            Female:  1            Other:  -

Further Reference:

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England's Ireland

Synopsis:
episodic historical look at the British in Northern Ireland. Loyalist view followed by bias towards IRa with torturing British Soldiers and Orange Lodge excrement

Notes:
written with Bicat, Clark, edgar, Fuchs, Hare, Wilson

1st Produced:
amsterdam    1972

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
20 scenes with songs One act

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Epsom Downs

Synopsis:
takes place on Derby day in Silver Jubilee Year encompasses punters of every degree

Notes:
Joint Stock theatre

1st Produced:
Round House, London    1977

Company:
-

1st Published:
Eyre Methuen, London, 1977   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  6            Female:  3            Other:  extras

Further Reference:

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Eternal Love

Synopsis:
When Abelard begins a wild affair with his brilliant student Heloise, his enemies find the perfect pretext to destroy him. Abelard is already on thin ice with the church over his contentious views and when Heloise bears his child out of wedlock, their affair becomes the scandal of the age... With its dynamic, contemporary language, stunning costumes and terrific live music, Eternal Love makes history burst into life in an energetic, visceral and above all highly entertaining style. Previously titled 'In Extremis' and following a triumphant season at Shakespeare's Globe, audiences outside of London now get the chance to revel in this funny, passionate and legendary love story

Notes:
aka In Extremis

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  7            Female:  6            Other:  extras

Further Reference:

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Fart For Europe, A

Synopsis:
attacks the 1973 "Fanfare for europe" celebrations. Labour MP with same views as enoch Powell; european Trade Union Links; multi-nationals rule

Notes:
written with David edgar

1st Produced:
London    1973

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Burlesque

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Faust: Parts One And Two

Faust: Parts One And Two
Soul to the devil, as always

Notes:
Original Playwright - Goethe, translation by Christa Weisman

1st Produced:
Swan, Stratford    1995

Company:
-

1st Published:
Nick Hern Books, London, 1995   978-1854592040

Music:
-

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Genre:
adaptation

Parts:
Male:  13            Female:  8            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Fruit

Synopsis:
a man, for reasons of personal revenge and cynicism, tries to bring down government by blackmailing homosexual prime minister.

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
Portable Theatre

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Satire on the Future Satire

Parts:
Male:  5            Female:  1            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Gargantua

Synopsis:
Distortions of scale with huge giants swallowing family having their Christmas dinner.

Notes:
novel by Raalais

1st Produced:
Brighton    1969

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
adaptation

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Genius, The

Synopsis:
the theme of an innovator's responsibility in the nuclear age through the related realms of education, the Cold War, student radicalism and political theory

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  5            Female:  3            Other:  1 skeleton

Further Reference:
-

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Gothic Triple Bill

Synopsis:
Revival

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies

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Genre:
-

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Government Property

Synopsis:
an 'environmental' show

Notes:
reworking of themes in the Churchill Play

1st Produced:
aarhus, Denmark    1975

Company:
-

1st Published:
script from Rosica Colin Ltd, London, 1975   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  9 actors

Further Reference:
-

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Greenland

Synopsis:
Over half the play is set 700 years in the future where the gap between expectations and reality is Dramatic for a drunk Peer and a middle aged woman.

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:

Music:
-

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If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies

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Genre:
Utopian Play

Parts:
Male:  4            Female:  4            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Guffin, The

Synopsis:
Four young people hanging out in a derelict house find a strange object; it's the Guffin. Touch it and your life is changed forever.

Notes:
PACE Youth theatre

1st Produced:

Company:
National Theatre Connections

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

To Buy This Play:
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Genre:
TYA

Parts:
Male:  5            Female:  4            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Gum And Goo

Synopsis:
Two boys transformed into fantasy gremlins by autistic girl. Girl pushed into a hole and found "not dead - worse, she's silent"

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
Brighton Combination, Brighton    1969

Company:
-

1st Published:
in "Plays for Public Places", Eyre Methuen, London, 1972   -

Music:
-

To Buy This Play:
If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies

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Genre:
One act

Parts:
Male:  2            Female:  1            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Heads

Synopsis:
a girl torn between love for two men, one for his mind the other for his physique, forces them to switch heads.

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
Bradford University, Bradford    1969

Company:
-

1st Published:
in "Christie in Love and Other Plays, Methuen, London, 1970   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Farce One act

Parts:
Male:  2            Female:  1            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Hid (Hess Is Dead)

Synopsis:
Investigates the contradictions surrounding the apparent suicide of Hitler' one time deputy.

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:

1st Published:
Nick Hern Books, London, 1989   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  3            Female:  2            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Hitler Dances

Synopsis:
Responses to the 2nd World War debunking the way it has been mythologised in fiction, films and television.

Notes:
In collaboration with the Traverse Workshop

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play in 24 scenes

Parts:
Male:  3            Female:  3            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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How Beautiful With Badges

Synopsis:
a tortured young working class Maoist disguised as a boy scout accompanied by his childish sidekick confront two hells angels on acid trip.

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
Open Space Theatre, London    1972

Company:
-

1st Published:
in "Three Plays" Sheffield academic Press, 1989   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Short play One act

Parts:
Male:  5            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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In Extremis

In Extremis
the true-life love story of Heloise and abelard. a new spirit of philosophical and religious enquiry is growing in 12th-century France. In its vanguard is the brilliant Peter abelard, a man of great learning, independence of mind, and sensuality. He starts a war of ideas with the powerful abbot and Pope-maker, Bernard of Clairvaux, the arch-priest of medieval mysticism and austerity. But when abelard begins a wild affair with his equally brilliant but disastrously connected student Heloise, his enemies find just the pretext they need to destroy him. Through the joy and suffering of one of the greatest love stories of the middle ages, Howard Brenton explores the relationships between logic and religion, humanism and fundamentalism, faith and power.

Notes:
an early version of In Extremis was written in 1997 At the University of California, Davis. It was performed by MFA students of the Drama Department. Now aka "Eternal Love"

1st Produced:
Shakespeare's Globe, London    2006

Company:
-

1st Published:

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  7            Female:  6            Other:  extras

Further Reference:
-

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Iranian Nights

Synopsis:
a response to the Iranian Fatwa placed on the writer Salman Rushdie

Notes:
written with Tariq Ali

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Nick Hern Books, London, 1989   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
One act

Parts:
Male:  2            Female:  1            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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It's My Criminal

Synopsis:
a thief who has been living rough attempts to steal from home of retired master criminal and gets punished by his retainer

Notes:
an Apprentice work"

1st Produced:
London    1966

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
One act

Parts:
Male:  2            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Jedefrau

Synopsis:
a group of women make a journey across modern europe eating male tourists along the way and finally meeting with death on an autobahn

Notes:
Original Playwright - Hugo von Hofmannsthal

1st Produced:
Salzburg    1974

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
adaptation

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Kit

Synopsis:
about Christopher Marlowe

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
Edinburgh Festival    2003

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
-

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Ladder Of Fools

Synopsis:
an attempt to escape from an underground science fiction world causes holy fool to dire; the play is then repeated backwards.

Notes:
an Apprentice work"

1st Produced:
Cambridge    1965

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Science Fiction Dream Play

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Lay By

Synopsis:
Fellatio as rape gets perpetrator ten years and pregnant heroin addict victim committed to Holloway. Denouement as main characters are washed in blood and made into jam.

Notes:
written by Brenton, Clark, Griffiths, Hare, Poliakoff, Stoddart, Wilson

1st Produced:
Edinburgh    1971

Company:
-

1st Published:
in "Plays & Players" Nov, 1971   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  4            Female:  2            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Life Of Galileo, The

Synopsis:
charts the progress of Galileo's life from his first demonstration to his imprisonment by the Spanish Inquisition

Notes:
Original Playwright - Bertolt Brecht

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Eyre Methuen, London, 1980   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
adaptation

Parts:
Male:  35            Female:  11            Other:  extras

Further Reference:
-

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Magnificence

Synopsis:
a squat is raided by police causing one squatter to lose baby another to be imprisoned. Violent finale as Conservative Minister and released squatter are blown up.

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Eyre Methuen, London, 1973   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
agit Prop Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  9            Female:  2            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Measure For Measure

Synopsis:
Vicious attack on Powellism within the Macmillan government and condemnation of puritan backlash.

Notes:
Original Playwright - Shakespeare

1st Produced:
Northcott, exeter    1972

Company:
-

1st Published:
in "Three Plays", academic, Sheffield, 1989   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Comedy

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Moscow Gold

Synopsis:
Charts the rise and rise of Russian President Gorbachov through satire, history, analysis and song.

Notes:
written with Tariq Ali

1st Produced:

Company:

1st Published:
Nick Hern Books, London, 1990   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
epic

Parts:
Male:  21            Female:  9            Other:  doubling

Further Reference:
-

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Mug

Synopsis:
Old man squirts CS gas into mugger's face. a condemnation of "arty little theatre plays about violent times".

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
Manchester    1973

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
One act

Parts:
Male:  2            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Nail Poems: 32 Haiku

Synopsis:
to chart Brenton's everyday landscape, moral and physical

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
London    1981

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
theatre poem

Parts:
Male:  1            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Never So Good

Never So Good
a fascinating portrait of Harold Macmillan in an epic play about the decline of British fortunes in the middle of the twentieth century. Set against a back-drop of fading empire, war, the Suez crisis, vintage champagne, adultery and vicious Tory politics at the Ritz, Never So Good paints the portrait of a brilliant, witty but complex man, at times comically and, in the end, tragically out of kilter with his times. Harold Macmillan, the eton-educated idealist who rushed, with Homer's Iliad under his arm, to do his duty in the Grenadier Guards, is tormented by the harsh experiences of war and an unhappy marriage. His career in the 1930s is blocked by his loyalty to Winston Churchill, and he nearly loses his life in the Second World War. When at last he becomes Prime Minister he is brought down by the Profumo scandal

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
National Theatre Company

1st Published:

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  12            Female:  2            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Paul

Paul
the most famous conversion in history - when Saul became Paul on the road to Damascus - was a trick. It was actually Jesus appearing to him. Jesus did not die on the cross but was rescued and sheltered by his brother James, by Peter and by Peter's wife, Mary Magdalene. But they prefer to keep Paul in the dark because, although he is mistakenly preaching that Christ rose again, at least it keeps him busy and gets the Christian message out there. . . Now imprisoned by Nero, Peter finally tells Paul the truth before they go to their deaths as the first Christian Martyrs-

Notes:
"they Are All praying for me, And they Are telling me I will go to hell unless I take the play off. I don't mind, because I don't believe in hell." Nicholas Hytner's sanguine response to 200 letters of complaint received before the play opened. Full story

1st Produced:

Company:
National Theatre Company

1st Published:

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  8            Female:  1            Other:  ensemble

Further Reference:
-

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Pravda

Synopsis:
our starting point was my fascination with a studio photograph of a man with a cigarette in one hand and a pipe in the other Fugard

Notes:
written with David Hare

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:

Music:
-

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Genre:
Fleet St Comedy

Parts:
Male:  14            Female:  5            Other:  doubling

Further Reference:
-

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Ragged Trousered Philanthropists, The

Ragged Trousered Philanthropists, The
Passionate, highly entertaining and gloriously funny - Robert Tressell's classic pre-First World War account of the working lives of a group of housepainters and decorators is vividly adapted by Howard Brenton. the Ragged Trousered Philanthropists recounts the little daily successes and the disasters of a group of working-class men, living under the constant fear of being laid off by employers forever looking for new corners to cut. Both workers and bosses are caught in a system spiralling out of control, but why is it the workers always come out worse? Howard Brenton's stage adaptation lays bare the many social injustices perpetrated on these men whilst capturing their individual characters with touching truth to life.

Notes:
By Robert Tressell, Adapted by Howard Brenton

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:

Music:
-

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Genre:
adaptation

Parts:
Male:  10            Female:  2            Other:  doubling

Further Reference:
-

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Revenge

Synopsis:
Conflict between an old east end lag just released from prison and a religious, almost ancestral, policeman from Scotland

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:

Music:
-

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Genre:
MeloDrama

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  14 characters

Further Reference:
-

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Romans In Britain, The

Synopsis:
homosexual rape, bloody violence, frequent obscenity and political signifying - empire at its worst

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Eyre Methuen, London, 1980   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama. - - Gay, theme/character, full length

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  Large Cast

Further Reference:
-

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Saliva Milkshake, The

Synopsis:
the dilEmma of a liberal intellectual caught in the crossfire of a political crisis which forces him to make a commitment

Notes:
novel Under Western eyes by Conrad

1st Produced:
Soho Poly, London    1975

Company:
-

1st Published:
TQ Publishing, London, 1977   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
One act

Parts:
Male:  3            Female:  1            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Scott Of the Antarctic: Or, What God Didn't See

Synopsis:
Mock "cabaret on ice", Scott is confronted by Devil on motorbike with hell's angels trying to stop his South Pole expedition.

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
Bradford    1971

Company:
-

1st Published:
in "Plays for Public Places", Eyre Methuen, London, 1972   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Ice Show

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Screens, The

Synopsis:
epic panorama on a theme of eastern fantasies

Notes:
Original Playwright - Jean Genet

1st Produced:
Bristol    1973

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
adaptation

Parts:
Male:  6            Female:  3            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Short Sharp Shock!, A

Synopsis:
attempts of "a mad socialist family" who run a junk shop of socialist memorabilia to counter the Thatcher Revolution

Notes:
written with Tony Howard

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Eyre Methuen, London, 1981   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  13            Female:  3            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Sky Blue Life, A

Synopsis:
Vignette from the life of Gorky exploring his conflicts with Lenin's revolution in Russia

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
London    1966

Company:
-

1st Published:
in "Three Plays" Sheffield academic Press, 1989   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
7 continous scenes One act

Parts:
Male:  4            Female:  3            Other:  extras

Further Reference:
-

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Sleeping Policemen

Synopsis:
Peckham, in South London, through the eyes of six of its inhabitants

Notes:
written with Tunde Ikoli

1st Produced:

Company:
Foco Novo Theatre Company

1st Published:

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  3            Female:  3            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Snogging Ken

Synopsis:
Including the Stigma Manifesto Pity Tony's nannies at New Labour's Millbank election war-room: they're working night and day to get Red Ken' and prevent him from becoming Mayor of London. Suddenly it's Ken, the cuckoo in the nest, who's getting the people's vote and Millbank, charged with plotting his downfall, is getting desperate. ever more dastardly plots are afoot as the election draws nearer.

Notes:
By Tariq Ali, Howard Brenton And Andy de la Tour

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Oberon, London, 2000   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  2            Female:  2            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Sore Throats

Synopsis:
Judy looks forward to a future of sexual, personal and financial freedom after attacks on her by her divorced husband, a policeman

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
Warehouse, Covent Garden, London    28 Aug 1979

Company:
RSC

1st Published:
Eyre Methuen, London, 1979   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
intimate play

Parts:
Male:  1            Female:  2            Other:  -

Further Reference:
RSC ref SOR197908

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Thing, The

Synopsis:
for children's performance

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
Brackley, Northamptonshire    1982

Company:
-

1st Published:
in "Play Nine" arnold, 1981   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Classroom Play For Young People 30 min

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Thirteenth Night

Synopsis:
selects the characters in Shakespeare to find the elements in the British character which could transform an englishman into a Stalin

Notes:
music by Nick Bicat

1st Produced:
Warehouse, Covent Garden, London    02 Jul 1981

Company:

1st Published:
Eyre Methuen, London, 1981   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Dream Play

Parts:
Male:  5            Female:  4            Other:  -

Further Reference:
RSC ref THI198107

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Ugly Rumours

Ugly Rumours
Once upon a time Tony-Boy and Gordon were happy. Really, really happy. then came power, lots of lovely power, but sadly it meant that only one of them could be Chief executive of the old firm. Behind the smiles lies a mountain of sulks. envy strangles their friendship. Fear eats their souls. But suddenly angels appear from on high in the shape of two luscious spin-doctors and some delicious quack remedies. Will the nation heave a sigh of relief? Is New Democracy safe?

Notes:
written with Tariq Ali

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Nick Hern Books, London,    -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Wall Dog, The

Synopsis:
-

Notes:
Original Playwright - Manfred Karge. Adapted with Jane Brenton

1st Produced:
London    1990

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
adaptation

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Warwickgate

Synopsis:
On the suppression of learning

Notes:
written with Tony Howard & 8 others

1st Produced:
Warwick possibly Coventry)    1979

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
University Play

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Weapons Of Happiness

Synopsis:
an old Czech Cabinet minister living in obscurity as a cleaner in London rediscovers love, Stalinism and the european communist movement

Notes:
-

1st Produced:

Company:
-

1st Published:
Eyre Methuen, London, 1976   -

Music:
-

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Genre:
Political play

Parts:
Male:  9            Female:  4            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Wesley

Synopsis:
episodic account of life of Methodist preacher, John Wesley, with sermons, choir and an announcer

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
Bradford Methodist Church, Bradford    1970

Company:
-

1st Published:
in "Plays for Public Places", Eyre Methuen, London, 1972   -

Music:
-

To Buy This Play:
If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies

Booksellers:

Genre:
Short Play One act

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  12 people

Further Reference:
-

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Winter, Daddykins

Synopsis:
as Father dies his daughter is saved from lad on the make by family

Notes:
an Apprentice work" rework of Ladder of Fools

1st Produced:
Nottingham    1966

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

To Buy This Play:
If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies

Booksellers:

Genre:
Farce One act

Parts:
Male:  3            Female:  2            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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