State support for culture
State support for culture
|31. Final polishing of a play||171||05:05|
|32. What do you do with a casting mistake?||215||03:01|
|33. My obsession with theatre||197||07:18|
|34. My memorable work||192||01:10|
|35. My favourite work||238||01:30|
|36. Working in film and TV||487||05:37|
|37. Musicals: 'nice escapist bilge'||154||01:06|
|38. State support for culture||140||04:31|
|39. Lord Chamberlain tries to censor my work||1||200||03:54|
|40. 'Theatre has always been dying'||246||06:57|
There are some great musicals which I love, Guys and Dolls, West Side Story, My Fair Lady. Rather keen on Pal Joey but now I'm running out at a rate of knots. What I don't like about musicals is that they are sentimental, they patronise the audience, they don't challenge the audience and they really don't, I think, win any converts for what I call theatre. I mean I think they're nice escapist bilge but, you know, that's fine. But I can't be expected to like them, if I don't. So I like the really good ones but most of them are worse than Gilbert and Sullivan. It's also, I suppose... it's difficult if you've been brought up as a musical snob, which I am, although I try and be broadminded but it's frightfully difficult. I mean how are you on the rock and roll time? You know... I stop at The Beatles and that's about it.
Sir Peter Hall's (b. 1930) life has seen him running Arts Theatre, founding the Royal Shakespeare Company when he was only 29, and directing the National Theatre from 1973 to 1988. In 1955, he directed the English-language premiere of 'Waiting for Godot' by Samuel Beckett at the Arts Theatre, London. He was at Shakespeare Memorial Theatre in Stratford-on-Avon for the 1957 to 1959 seasons. He also directed Akenfield for London Weekend Television and runs the Peter Hall Company, which has 40 productions worldwide to its name. Hall was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 1963 and in 1977 was knighted for his contribution to the theatre. In 1999, he was also honoured with a Laurence Olivier Award.
Title: Musicals: 'nice escapist bilge'
Listeners: John Goodwin
Head of Press at the National Theatre (1974-1988), and earlier at the RSC (1960-1974), John Goodwin is the author of a best-selling paperback, A short Guide to Shakespeare's Plays, and co-author of Trader Faulkner's one-man show, Losing My Marbles. He is also editor of the play, Sappho, based on Alphonse Daudet's novel, and editor of a number of successful books, among them, Peter Hall's Diaries, and, British Theatre Design - the modern age.
Tags: Guys and Dolls, West Side Story, My Fair Lady, Pal Joey, The Beatles, Gilbert and Sullivan
Duration: 1 minute, 7 seconds
Date story recorded: February 2006
Date story went live: 24 January 2008