Friday, December 20, 2019

To Bodies Gone: The Theatre of Peter Gill

This is the first study of one of the most significant voices of modern international theatre, one of Wales's leading writers, and one of the most compelling and beautiful bodies of work in the last fifty years. To Bodies Gone is written by playwright Barney Norris, who has assisted in Gill's productions and possesses an intimate and personal knowledge of Gill's processes and values. He explores a career remarkable in its constancy from the groundbreaking staging ideas of the early productions to the extraordinary heights of the mature work, illustrated by the rave reviews for Versailles, Gill latest play. Norris's principle theme is the aesthetic Gill introduced to theatre, and which has remained the bedrock of his work, in its various manifestations across several decades: Gill's work as a writer and director has consistently revealed the extraordinary in the daily world. Analysing his career broadly chronologically, this study places Gill's work in the wider context of the theatre, providing a portrait of British theatre in the second half of the twentieth century and contributing new insights into theatre history. To Bodies Gone includes chapters on Gill's early work, influences (Lawrence, Chekhov, Beckett), his translations and adaptations (Lawrence, Chekhov, Wedekind, Faulkner), his directing career at the Royal Court, Riverside Studios, National Theatre and NT Studio, plus his major plays - Small Change, Kick for Touch, In the Blue, Cardiff East, The York Realist and, most recently, Versailles, Gill's exploration of the new order following the first world war. The result is a major study full of insight into Gill and into British Theatre.

I am out early doors this morning calling at Leamington Spa and Portishead, before heading to Cardiff, so I am queuing this discovery up up the night before, automatically to publish when I am already on the road.

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