22nd September, 2021 / 19:00 -
25th July, 2013
Following on from his recent Olivier award in recognition of an outstanding theatre career spanning four decades, Methuen Drama playwright Michael Frayn discusses his prolific literary career with Geoffrey Colman.
‘A man equally distinguished as a playwright, a novelist and a translator; it’s hard to think of anyone else who has pulled off this literary triple-crown, and that’s before you consider his side-projects of journalism, essays and philosophy, all published in collected editions. His name is synonymous with both comedy and seriousness. In his work, a vaudevillian and a professor of phenomenology sometimes seem to wrestle for mastery.’ Guardian
Michael Frayn has published novels – The Tin Men, The Russian Interpreter, Towards the End of the Morning, A Very Private Life, Sweet Dreams, The Trick of It, A Landing on the Sun, Now You Know, Headlong, Spies, and Skios, together with two philosophical works, Constructions and The Human Touch. He has also written Stage Directions – a collection of his prefaces and postscripts – and the non-fiction work My Father’s Fortune. His plays include The Two of Us, Alphabetical Order, Donkeys’ Years, Clouds, Balmoral (Liberty Hall), Make and Break, Noises Off, Benefactors, Copenhagen, Democracy, and Here. He adapted his novel Now You Know for the stage.
He has also translated four of Chekhov’s full-length plays (The Cherry Orchard, Three Sisters, The Seagull and Uncle Vanya), adapted his first, untitled play as Wild Honey, translated four of his one-act plays (The Evils of Tobacco, Swan Song, The Bear and The Proposal), and adapted five of his short stories for the stage (Drama, The Alien Corn, The Sneeze, The Inspector General, Swan Song, and Plots). Michael Frayn has also translated Tolstoy’s Fruits of Enlightenment, Yuri Trifonov’s Exchange, and Anouilh’s Number One.
His films include Clockwise and First and Last. Aside from the numerous awards for many of his works, Michael Frayn was awarded the Writer’s Guild Lifetime Achievement Award in 2010, received the South Bank Show Outstanding Achievement Award 2012, and was awarded a Special Award at the Olivier Awards in 2013.
Geoffrey Colman is Head of Acting at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.
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