A brilliant and painfully truthful portrait of Stanley Spencer, the wayward genius of modern British painting.
Coming from humble origins, Stanley Spencer never lost his ‘rough edges’, despite being taken up by the smart set. His stubborn championing of ordinary people and local places as suitable subjects for religious painting was revolutionary. His appetite for life was hugely attractive, though his attitude to women in general and his long-suffering wife in particular was deeply selfish: ‘Why can’t I have two wives if that’s what I need?’
Pam Gems’ play Stanley was first performed at the National Theatre, London, in February 1996, directed by John Caird and featuring Antony Sher as Stanley.
The play won Best Play at the 1996 Evening Standard Awards, and Best New Play at the 1997 Olivier Awards.
‘Highly plausible, deeply moving’
‘Very funny and affecting’
Best New Play, Olivier Awards
Best Play, Evening Standard Awards