Alan Ayckbourn

Plays by Alan Ayckbourn

Hero’s Welcome  

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

A war hero returns to the town he fled 17 years ago which threatens to stir up old rivalries and resentments.

Hero's Welcome premiered at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, in September 2015.

House (Ayckbourn)

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

House & Garden

The triumph of his ingenuity lies in the fact that you have to see both plays . A second time round, in whichever order you take them, characters will deepen, while those you know become the background. It is a superb Ayckbourn joke that a comedy about non-communication should depend on the sharpest communication skills. Sunday Times

If I Were You

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

‘A blissfully funny comedy that’s also filled with sadness, a devilishly simple theatrical idea that spins out all kinds of complex truths about human nature.’ Daily Telegraph

If I Were You was first performed at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, in October 2006.

Invisible Friends

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

Teenage Lucy’s family is too busy to pay her attention, so she decides to revive Zara, her imaginary childhood friend. This time, however, Zara really comes to life materialises, bringing with her a replacement father and brother. Lucy is about to learn you have to be care what you wish for. Even fantasy familes aren’t perfect, after all.

Invisible Friends premiered at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, in November 1989.

© Haydonning Ltd, 1991

audio Just Between Ourselves

LA Theatre Works
Type: Audio

The first of Ayckbourn’s darkly comic masterpieces involves a relentlessly cheerful handyman in a disastrously fractured marriage. Two couples develop an unlikely friendship in this painfully funny portrait of British suburban life.

An L.A. Theatre Works full-cast performance featuring:

Gia Carides as Pam

Kenneth Danziger as Dennis

Judy Geeson as Vera

Miriam Margolyes as Marjorie

Alfred Molina as Neil

Directed by Waris Hussein. Recorded before a live audience at the Skirball Cultural Center, Los Angeles.

Featuring: Gia Carides, Kenneth Danziger, Judy Geeson, Miriam Margolyes, Alfred Molina

Life and Beth

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

‘A wise, humane, funny play about the inevitability of death and the continuity of life.’ Guardian

Life and Beth was first performed at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, in July 2008.

Life of Riley

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

‘As perceptive as ever… Ayckbourn has once again achieved a satisfyingly rich, tragi-comic complexity.’ Daily Telegraph

Life of Riley was first performed at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, in September 2010.

audio Living Together

LA Theatre Works
Type: Audio

In the second “battle” of Ayckbourn’s celebrated triology The Norman Conquests, we rejoin the family weekend, this time hearing the events in the living room, where Norman gets drunk on homemade dandelion wine – and all hell breaks loose. Norman unleashes his merry brand of manipulative charm on the hapless guests and even his most formidable opponents go down in defeat on the drawing room rug.

An L.A. Theatre Works full-cast performance featuring:

Rosalind Ayres as Sarah

Kenneth Danziger as Reg

Martin Jarvis as Norman

Jane Leeves as Annie

Christopher Neame as Tom

Carolyn Seymour as Ruth

Featuring: Rosalind Ayres, Ken Danziger, Martin Jarvis, Jane Leeves, Christopher Neame, Carolyn Seymour

audio Man of the Moment

LA Theatre Works
Type: Audio

The price of accidental fame is hashed out in this comedy about a famous bank robber and the clerk who foiled his biggest heist. Ayckbourn’s 1988 play anticipates the popularity - and absurdity - of reality TV.

An L.A. Theatre Works full-cast performance featuring:

Rosalind Ayres as Jill Rillington

Jane Carr as Trudy Parks

Kenneth Danziger as Douglas Beechey

Martin Jarvis as Vic Parks

Ian Oglivy as Kenny Collins

Yeardley Smith as Sharon Giffin

Directed by Robert Robinson. Recorded before a live audience in Santa Monica, CA in February, 1994.

Featuring: Rosalind Ayres, Jane Carr, Kenneth Danziger, Martin Jarvis, Ian Oglivy, Yeardley Smith

Man of the Moment  

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

‘This is Ayckbourn at the peak of his powers using comedy to say harsh, true things about our society. With the cleansing force of a satirist, he suggests we are constantly fed a doctored version of reality in which virtue is treated as disposable and even as sexy. What he has written is a tonic comedy that defends traditional values without a trace of moral sententiousness.’ Guardian

Man of the Moment premiered at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, in August 1988.

Picture of Alan Ayckbourn

Alan Ayckbourn was born in London in 1939 to a violinist father and a mother who was a writer. He left school at seventeen with two 'A' levels and went straight into the theatre. Two years in regional theatre as an actor and stage manager led in 1959 to the writing of his first play, The Square Cat, for Scarborough's Theatre in the Round at the instigation of his then employer and subsequent mentor, Stephen Joseph. Some 75 plays later, his work has been translated into over 35 languages, is performed on stage and television throughout the world and has won countless awards. There have been English and French screen adaptations, the most notable being Alain Resnais' fine film of Private Fears in Public Places.
Major successes include Relatively Speaking, How the Other Half Loves, Absurd Person Singular, Bedroom Farce, A Chorus of Disapproval, The Norman Conquests, A Small Family Business, Henceforward . . ., Comic Potential, Things We Do For Love, and Life of Riley. Surprises was first presented at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, and subsequently at the the Minerva Theatre, Chichester in 2012.
In 2009, he retired as Artistic Director of the Stephen Joseph Theatre, where almost all his plays have been and continue to be first staged, after 37 years in the post. Knighted in 1997 for services to the theatre, he received the 2010 Critics' Circle Award for Services to the Arts and became the first British playwright to receive both Olivier and Tony Special Lifetime Achievement Awards.