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Stage Plays
The Habit of Art - Alan Bennett
By Mayo Movie World
10, Apr 2010 - 22:21


The Habit of Art

A new play by Alan Bennett

LIVE THEATRE in HD from the National Theatre SouthBank

Thurs 22nd April @ 6.30, Curtain up at 7.00

The cast is led by Tony Award winner Richard Griffiths, Alex Jennings, Adrian Scarborough and Tony Award winner Frances de la Tour.

Director: Nicholas Hytner. Music: Mathew Scott.

Now Booking at or at the Ticket Box

Alan Bennett is one of the UK's most prolific living playwrights. His new play, The Habit of Art is as much about the theatre as it is about poetry and music. Chronicling a fictionalized meeting between Benjamin Britten and W. H. Auden, it looks at the unsettling desires of two difficult men and at the ethics of biography. It reflects on growing old, creativity, inspiration, and on persisting when all passion's spent; ultimately, on the habit of art.

Auden often said that metre and rhyme led him down unexpected paths to thoughts he wouldn't otherwise have had, and in this respect versification and fornication are not so different.

Benjamin Britten, sailing uncomfortably close to the wind with his new opera, Death in Venice, seeks advice from his former collaborator and friend, W H Auden. During this imagined meeting, their first for twenty-five years, they are observed and interrupted by, amongst others, their future biographer and a young man from the local bus station.

You are a rent boy. I am a poet. Over the wall lives the Dean of Christ Church. We all have our parts to play.

‘In the end,' said Auden, ‘art is small beer. The really serious things in life are earning one's living and loving one's neighbour.'

5 STARS 'Another absolute cracker, often wonderfully and sometimes filthily funny, but also deeply and unexpectedly moving.' Daily Telegraph

5 STARS 'Bennett the maestro returns with a multi-layered masterpiece.' Independent

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