To mark 50 years since the end of state theatre censorship in the UK, a team of actors led by Simon Callow will perform excerpts from a selection of canonical plays, and books adapted for the stage, that have been banned and censored in a variety of countries and time periods.
After the performance, there will be a panel discussion featuring leading figureheads in the industry, including director Lev Dodin, playwrights Christopher Hampton and Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti, free speech campaigner Jodie Ginsberg and theatre critic Michael Billington, discussing: Is Censorship Ever Good?
Since the beginning of theatrical history, governments and people has prevented the performance of play texts for political, social and cultural reasons. Directors and playwrights alike also frequently adapt banned and censored books for the stage – our event coincides with the premiere of Lev Dodin’s adaptation of Vasily Grossman’s once banned Life & Fate, and Christopher Hampton’s adaptation of Moliere’s once censored Tartuffe, both performing at the Haymarket this May.
In an era where freedom of speech if constantly reexamined, this event explores banned texts and the power of language and performance.
This event is presented by Belka Productions and the London tour of the Maly Drama Theatre with their production of Life & Fate, in collaboration with JW3.