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Art of the Dramatist, The  

And Other Writings on the Theatre

Art of the Dramatist, The $23.59 ex GST
$25.95 inc GST

‘Why do we go to the theatre? What is it we enjoy there? If we go to follow the fortunes of imaginary characters, why do we trouble ourselves about the actors? If we go to enjoy the actors, why should the quality of the play worry us?’

So begins J.B. Priestley’s landmark Old Vic lecture, The Art of the Dramatist, which examines and celebrates the playwright’s craft. He shows how a theatrical experience relies on the ‘delicate balance between belief and disbelief’ and addresses the tools with which a dramatist shapes a play.

These passionate and witty essays distil Priestley’s experience as a playwright, producer, director and—just once—actor. Published as a companion volume to Priestley's plays, this new collection is part defence of theatre, part incisive criticism. The anthology is introduced by Tom Priestley, the playwright’s son.

Oberon Books | 978-1-84002-294-0 | Sales rights: Australia/NZ | PB


J.B. PriestlEy was born in Bradford, and educated there at Trinity Hall, Cambridge. His reputation as a dramatist was established by Dangerous Corner, Time and the Conways & other plays on space/time themes, as well as popular comedies such a Laburnum Grove & his psychological mystery,  An Inspector Calls. Best known as a writer of novels, Priestley was also master of the essay form. He was an astute, original and controversial commentator on contemporary society.

By J.B. Priestly, available through Currency Press - see all