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UBC Publications

UBC Publications

Look Back in Anger Sep 19, 1984

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Array Frederic Wood Theatre
LOOK BACK
ANGER Before and
STUDENT
UNION BUILDING
MAIN CONCOURSE
UNIVERSITY OF
BRITISH COLUMBIA
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• ••
After the Show t
ESTERN CANADA'S
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6200 University Boulevard. Vancouver, B.C.   V6T1Y5
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Also Open Wednesday Evenings and Saturdays! University of British Columbia
Frederic Wood Theatre
Presents
Look Back
In Anger
By
John Osborne
Directed by
Stanley Weese
September 19-29
1984
University of British Columbia
FREDERIC
WOOD
THEATRE
1984/85 Season
Look Back in Anger
by John Osborne
Directed by Stanley Weese
(September 19-29)
Twelfth Night
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Pamela Hawthorne
(November 7-17)
The Imaginary Invalid
By Moliere
Directed by Mavor Moore
(January 16-26)
Happy End
Music by Kurt Weill
Lyrics by Bertolt Brecht
Directed by Arne Zazlove
(March 6-16)
For information and reservations
phone 228-2678
FWT
Program Magazine
PUBLISHER
Joseph G. MacKinnon
DIRECTOR OF SALES
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SALES REPRESENTATIVE
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A publication of:
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Any comments or enquiries
regarding the contents of this
publication may be forwarded to
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above address. Cape
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922-2511 A Brief Chronology
1929 12th December. Born in a suburb of London, of "impoverished middle-class"
parents. His father was Thomas Godfrey Osborne, a commercial artist and
copy-writer, and his mother was Nellie Beatrice, born Grove, a barmaid.
1941    Death of his father. Spent much of the war with his mother in London, but
was eventually sent to Belmont College, Devon—a "rather cheap boarding
school in the west of England", where he was "unhappy for most of the
time".
1946 Left school, and had his first play produced: he now describes it as "terrible".
Worked as a journalist for a few months on trade magazines-Gas World
and The Miller—as "a sort of dogsbody and sub-editor".
1948 "Drifted" on to the stage, as tutor to juvenile actors in a touring group. He
himself acted for the first time at the Empire Theatre, Sheffield, in March, as
Mr. Burrells in Joan Temple's No Room at the Inn. Later became an actor-
manager, running repertory seasons at Sidmouth, llfracombe, and various
seaside resorts.
1955 Personal Enemy, written in collaboration with Anthony Creighton, staged at
Harrogate. Apart from Epitaph for George Dillon, on which he also collaborated with Anthony Creighton, Osborne wrote two other plays, so far
unperformed, before Look Back in Anger. He worked on this during a spell
of unemployment, submitted it to the newly-formed English Stage Company,
and had his script accepted within two weeks.
1956 April. Joined the English Stage Company as an actor. 8th May. First performance of Look Back in Anger. 15th May. Made his first appearance as an
actor on the London Stage, as Antonio in Don luan and Lionel in The Death
of Satan, at the Royal Court. Appeared in the same theatre in Cards of
identity in June, and as Lin To in The Good Woman of Setzuan in October.
Evening Standard Award as Most Promising Playwright of the Year.
1957 10th April. First performance of The Entertainer.
1961 London production of Luther, which also visited theatre festivals in Paris,
Holland and Edinburgh.
1964 London production of tnadmissable Evidence opened in September.
1966 London production of A Bond Honoured at the National Theatre.
1968 First London productions of Time Present and The Hotel in Amsterdam.
1973 A Sense of Detachment
1981 An Autobiography
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John Osborne
"Angry Young Man" ?
By George E. Wellwarth
THE "NEW MOVEMENT" in the British drama actually began officially on the night
of May 8, 1956, when John Osborne's Look Back in Anger opened at the Royal
Court Theatre in London. The reviews in the daily newspapers the next day were in
general cautiously favorable. But it was not until Kenneth Tynan's review came out
the following Sunday that the "movement" was properly launched. This review will
strike most people as prententious, self-publicizing gush rather than criticism, but it
had its effect. Overnight, Osborne, previously an obscure provincial actor, became
famous; and sundry despairing young playwrights who had been furtively scribbling
away in seedy rooming houses on the Earl's Court Road, in Hampstead, Hackney,
Poplar, Whitechapel, and Newington Butts suddenly took heart and set to with
renewed industry. They were fortunate. John Osborne's timing was precisely right. A
few years earlier or a few years later Look Back in Anger might well have been
passed off by the critics as callow breast-beating, but in 1956 the critics and the
public were ready for something new. The sincerity of the Osborne play must have
come as a tremendous relief after the seemingly endless stream of elephantiasis-
afflicted plots trying to be fey that characterized the efforts of the fashionable West
End dramatists. There was also the factor of the international success of Arthur Miller
and Tennessee Williams. At last someone had appeared who could challenge the
Americans' position as representatives of the English-speaking drama. Chauvinism
stirred in the critics as they watched Look Back in Anger: and the angry-young-man
movement was born.
John Osborne must have been the most surprised man in England when he suddenly found himself placed at the head of the angry-young-man movement. He had
written a carefully and intelligently worked out dramatic study of a psychotic
marriage relationship and was hailed instead as the creator of a revolutionary literary
movement. Certainly Jimmy Porter makes a good many cutting remarks about contemporary society, but he only makes them as a result of his own peculiar personality problems. There is absolutely no indication in the play that Osborne ever intended Jimmy's remarks to be taken as a general condemnation of society, jimmy is
an extremely unusual young man and anything but representative of the young men
of our time. Osborne has not put his diatribes against society in his mouth in order
to orate in the manner of a Hyde Park soap-box messiah. Instead, Jimmy's rantings
are always the natural outgrowth of his psychotic state: they are a defense
Two photographs from the London world premiere (May 1956} with
Kenneth Haigh as Jimmy Porter, Alan Bates as Cliff Lewis and Mary Ure
as Alison Porter. mechanism he uses to hurt his wife, whom he suspects of being imperfectly
devoted to him, and to avoid facing up to the problem of his own helpless character. Granted that a representative of the generation which reached adulthood in the
early fifties would execrate his elders (what generation this side of early Victorianism
has not?), his anger could hardly be embodied in Jimmy's rantings if any justice is to
be done to him. He has a right to rant and he has a right to be heard; he has a right
even to throw up his hands in disgust and retire, whether it be into a Zen or a beat-
nick euphoria or simply into a flabby, unthinking, irresponsible lassitude. But Jimmy's
tirades are not representative of any attitude. Osborne has given Jimmy a certain
facility in composing biting remarks, but there is no real sense, no mature criticism in
those remarks. Examined closely, Jimmy Porter's self-conscious orations are the
veritablest sophomoric piffle.
Yet, Osborne was created an excellent, minutely accurate dissection of a perverse
marriage in the style of Strindberg. Look Back in Anger irresistably recalls the
Swedish author's Dance of Death, jimmy Porter's problem is not the viscious injustice
and hypocrisy of the social order: it is his suppressed awareness of the insoluble
psychological paradox caused by his desperate, overriding need to possess a
woman's complete, unquestioning love and his simultaneous constitutional inability
to get along with anyone. His outbursts are the overflow of his bitterness whenever
his wife fails to measure up to the standards of devotion that he expects of her at the
same time that he knows them to be impossible, jimmy's biting sarcasms are in a
sense really directed inwardly against himself in the manner of the guilt-ridden
Dostoyevskian hero who tortures himself by torturing others. His real purpose, as he
deliberately tries to destroy his wife's love for him because it is not the love he had
envisioned, is self laceration. Jimmy is the sort of man who needs, but is too proud
to demand, absolute devotion. He needs it all the more from Alison because she
comes from the sort of upper-class family which he, as a good socialist, despises as
useless and effete and which at the same time he envies and resents because he
knows that it looks down on him. In order to possess her he has had to marry her
and submit to the conventionality that he hates. His dilemma is perfectly presented
in Alison's description of his reaction to her virginity: "afterwards, he actually taunted
me with my virginity. He was quite angry about it, as if I had deceived him in some
strange way. He seemed to think that an untouched woman would defile him." By
being a virgin she is pulling him into the vortex of social convention. She is what she
is expected to be in her circle. But Jimmy cannot show pleasure because that would
the be conventional reaction, though if his wife were not virginal he would have to
resent it as evidence of her fickleness. What he really wants, as Alison explains to
her friend, Helena (who becomes Jimmy's mistress when Alison leaves him), is
"something quite different from us. What it is exactly I don't know—a kind of cross
between a mother and a Creek courtesan, a henchwoman, a mixture of Cleopatra
and Boswell." Jimmy's tragedy is simply that he will never find this ideal, and he
knows it. He will spend the rest of his life bathed in self-pity, yammering impotently
at the misfortunes he himself has created.
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LOOK BAD
John 0<
Directed by
STANLEY WEESE
Designed by
DON. S.DAVIS
CAST
JIMMY PORTER Bruce Dow
CLIFF LEWIS Mark Hopkins
ALISON PORTER Pamela Dangelmaier
HELENA CHARLES Carolyn Soper
COLONEL REDFERN Errol Durbach
VOCAL COACH Steven Thome
There will be two 12 minute intermissions.
This play is produced by special arrangement with
The Dramatic Publishing Co.
Chicago, Illinois
8 KIN ANGER
)sborne
PRODUCTION
Technical Director IAN PRATT
Properties SHERRY DARCUS
Costume Supervisor ROSEMARIE HESELTON
Set Construction ROBERT EBERLE, DON GRIFFITHS
Lighting Execution JOHN HENRICKSON
Lighting Operator DAVID A.C HAY
Stage Manager KATHLEEN MEASURES
Assistant to the Director DAVID U. GARFINKLE
Wardrobe OWEN LOCK
Stage Crew THE STUDENTS OF THEATRE 350
House Manager R. CRAIG DUFFY
Box Office CAROL FISHER, MARK HOPKINS and
LINDA HUMPHRIES
Business Manager MARJORIE FORDHAM
Production NORMAN YOUNG
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Look Back In Anger
The First Review
By Kenneth Tynan, May 1956
They are scum' was Mr. Maugham's famous verdict on the class of State-aided
university students to which Kingsley Amis's Lucky Jim belongs; and since Mr.
Maugham seldom says anything controversial or uncertain of wide acceptance, his
opinion must clearly be that of many. Those who share it had better stay well away
from John Osborne's Look Back in Anger, which is all scum and a mile wide.
Its hero, a provincial graduate who runs a sweet-stall, has already been summed
up in print as 'a young pup', and it is not hard to see why. What with his flair for introspection, his gift for ribald parody, his excoriating candour, his contempt for
'phoneyness", his weakness for soliloquy, and his desperate conviction that the time
is out of joint, Jimmy Porter is the completest young pup in our literature since
Hamlet, Prince of Denmark. His wife, whose Anglo-Indian parents resent him, is persuaded by an actress friend to leave him^ Jimmy's prompt response is to go to bed
with the actress. Mr. Osborne's picture of a certain kind of modern marriage is
hilariously accurate: he shows us two attractive young animals engaged in competitive martyrdom, each with its teeth sunk deep in the other's neck, and each
reluctant to break the clinch for fear of bleeding to death.
The fact that he writes with charity has led many critics into the trap of supposing
that Mr. Osborne's sympathies are wholly with Jimmy. Nothing could be more false.
Jimmy is simply and abundantly alive; that rarest of dramatic phenomena, the act of
original creation, has taken place; and those who carp were better silent. Is Jimmy's
anger justified? Why doesn't he do something? Is the sun justified in scorching us?
There will be time enough to debate Mr. Osborne's moral position when he has
written a few more plays. In the present one he certainly goes off the deep end, but
I cannot regard this as a vice in a theatre that seldom ventures more than a toe into
the water.
Look Back in Anger presents post-war youth as it really is, with special emphasis
on the non-U intelligentsia who live in bed-sitters and divide the Sunday papers into
two groups, 'posh' and 'wet. to have done this at all would be a signal achievement;
to have done it in a first play is a minor miracle. All the qualities are there, qualities
one had despaired of ever seeing on the stage - the drift towards anarchy, the instinctive leftishness, the automatic rejection of 'official' attitudes, the surrealist sense of
humour (Jimmy describes a pansy friend as 'a female Emily Bronte'), the casual
promiscuity, the sense of lacking a crusade worth fighting for, and, underlying all
these, the determination that no one who dies shall go unmourned.
One cannot imagine Jimmy Porter listening with a straight face to speeches about
our inalienable right to flog Cypriot schoolboys. You could never mobilize him and
his kind into a lynching mob, since the art he lives for, jazz, was invented by
Negroes; and if you gave him a razor, he would do nothing with it but shave. The
Porters of our time deplore the tyranny of 'good taste' and refuse to accept
'emotional' as a term of abuse; they are classless, and they are also leaderless. Mr.
Osborne is their first spokesman in the London theatre. He has been lucky in his
sponsors (the English Stage Company), his director (Tony Richardson), and his interpreters: Mary Ure, Helena Hughes, and Alan Bates give fresh and unforced performances, and in the taxing central role Kenneth Haigh never puts a foot wrong.
That the play needs changes I do not deny: it is twenty minutes too long, and not
even Mr. Haigh's bravura could blind me to the painful whimsey of the final reconciliation scene. I agree that Look Back in Anger is likely to remain a minority taste.
What matters, however, is the size of the minority. I estimate it at roughly 6,733,000,
which is the number of people in this country between the ages of twenty and thirty. And this figure will doubtless be swelled by refugees from other age-groups who
are curious to know precisely what the contemporary young pup is thinking and
feeling. I doubt if I could love anyone who did not wish to see Look Back in Anger. It
is the best young play of its decade.
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The Cast
Pamela Dangelmaier
During her first year at U.B.C. Pamela appeared in Mussoc's South Pacific and
discovered that her interest in acting took precedence over her pursuit of a musical
career. This discovery prompted her to switch from the Bachelor of Music Program
to the Bachelor of Fine Arts Acting Program. Since entering the B.F.A. program, she
has been able to combine her musical and theatrical talents in such roles as: Sgt.
Sarah Brown in Mussoc's Cuys and Dolls and May Edwards in the Frederic Wood
production of The Ticket of Leave Man. Last season, Pamela appeared in the title
role of the World Premier production of Leonard Angel's new play, Eleanor Marx,
receiving complimentary reviews. Also for the Freddy Wood she has appeared in
Love's Labor's Lost and as Maria opposite Simon Webb in The Suicide. She was a
company member of Stage Campus '83 as well as the touring company of The Sports Show Pamela will complete her fourth and final year of the B.F.A. Acting Program
this spring.
Bruce Dow
Bruce will be familiar to any of you returning the the Frederic Wood Theatre after
last year's successful season. In addition to principle roles in Waiting for Godot,
Love's Labor's Lost, The Importance of Being Earnest, and The Suicide, Bruce has
been seen on the mainstage in King Lear and The Ticket-of-Leave Man. Always
fascinated by the use of music in theatre, he served two years as President and
Producer of UBC's own musical theatre society, MUSSOC, and has pursued his interest in writing and composition. He has composed original scores for The Exception and the Rule, The Sports Show, Dreaming and Duelling, and the script and
score for a new musical, which has yet to be produced. This summer he was
afforded the opportunity to Musical Direct and Choreograph Oh What a Lovely
War for Stage Campus '84. Bruce will graduate with a BFA in Acting in April.
Errol Durbach
Errol Durbach is a Professor in the English and Theatre Departments at UBC,
teaching courses in Shakespeare and Theatre History. He has published widely on
modern drama, especially on the plays of Ibsen. His previous roles for the Frederic
Wood Theatre include Kent in King Lear, Menelaus in The Trofan Women, and Karl
Marx in Eleanor Marx. He has also appeared in Touchstone Theatre's production of
Ivan Klima's Games..
Mark Hopkins
Mark is a 4th year BFA acting student at UBC who has appeared at the Frederic
Wood Theatre in The Suicide, The Importance of Being Earnest, Love's Labor's
Lost, and the title role in The Ticket-of-Leave Man. It was UBC MUSSOC's production of 5ou(h Pacific that convinced him to return to UBC to begin his BFA training,
and to play Nathan Detroit in MUSSOC's Cuys & Dolls.
The summer before returning to UBC, Mark attended the Banff Centre School of
Fine Arts as a member of the Musical Theatre Ensemble where he appeared in The
Music Man, and as Billy Crocker in Anything Goes. He has also appeared for Vancouver musical theatre in Fiddler On The Roof, jesus Christ Superstar, and as
George Berger in Hair. Mark was last seen this summer, as Roger the Mooner in
Theatre Under the Stars' 50th anniversary production, Grease.
Carolyn Soper
Carolyn should be well known to Frederic Wood Theatre audiences, having appeared in varied roles ranging from the young boy in Waiting for Godot, to
Serafima, the 60 year old Russian mother-in-law in The Suicide. Other roles at Freddy Wood include the title role in the M.F.A. production of Ant/gone, Samuel
Willoughby Esq. in The Ticket-of-Leave Man and Cecily in The importance of Being
Earnest. A member of Stage Campus '83's summer stock company, Carolyn appeared as Simonne in Marat/Sade and as Miss Thumb in The Memorandum. After
completing a month long tour of local elementary schools last spring, she appeared
at the Vancouver International Children's Festival in her B.F.A. class production of
The 5ports Show. Carolyn will graduate this year from the B.F.A. acting program.
Kathleen Measures stage managed The Dining Room, Dreaming & Duelling,
Bedroom Farce and Oh What A Lovely War for Summer Stock '84. She is entering the third year of her Technical/Design B.F.A. program at U.B.C
12 Left to Right: Carolyn Soper, Mark Hopkins, Bruce Dow and Pamela Dangelmaier.
PHOTO BY:
Marcel Williams
13 COMING ATTRACTIONS
University of British Columbia
FREDERIC
WOOD
THEATRE
1984/85 Season
Look Back in Anger
by John Osborne
Directed by Stanley Weese
(September 19-29)
Twelfth Night
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Pamela Hawthorne
(November 7-17)
The Imaginary Invalid
By Moliere
Directed by Mavor Moore
(January 16-26)
Happy End
Music by Kurt Weill
Lyrics by Bertolt Brecht
Directed by Arne Zazlove
(March 6-16)
For information and reservations
phone 228-2678
A New Book
from UBC Press
GROWING UP BRITISH
IN BRITISH COLUMBIA
Boys in Private School
jean Barman
Available in October, illustrated, $29.95
The University of British Columbia Press
V-'
:...«.••
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:: VANCOUVER::
••
••
Our 1984/85 Season
A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS
By Robert Bolt-Historical Drama
September 21-October 20
Starring William Hutt
Directed by Walter Learning
TERRA NOVA
Captain Scotts exciting
race to the South Pole
November 2 - December 1
Starring Terrance Kelly
BETTER WATCH OUT
You Better Not Die
By John Cray-Thriller/Farce
December 7-January 5
Starring Jackson Davies, Robert
Clothier, Shirley Broderick
& Nicola Cavendish
Directed by Tom Kerr
BREW - Comedy
January 11 - February 9
CLARENCE DARROW
By David Rintels-Drama
February 15-March 16
Starring William Hutt
Directed by Walter Learning
SCHOOL FOR SCANDAL
By R.B. Sheridan -
18th Century Comedy
March 22 - April 20
Special Student Price
for Season Tickets
$30.00!
For Season Ticket Information
Call: 873-3311
14 ELI PRODUCTIONS INC.
202-2182 W. 12th Avenue
Vancouver, BC  V6K2N4
731-8018
TYPESETTING
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GRAPHICS
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ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
•ADVERTISING
•ADVERTISING
-ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
■ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
ADVERTISING
Costumes,
Costumes,
Costumes...
Come to Vancouver's
biggest, most colorful,
most extravagant
Costume Sale
on
October 20
10:00 a.m. until it lasts
in
the lobby of
The Frederic Wood
Theatre
Splendid items and
reasonable prices
Get ready for
Halloween!
On Sale
All
Phillips, London,
DGG
Argo & Archiv
5IK0IWJ
CLfiJJKflL
RECORDS
>k
Records, cassettes & Compact Discs
432 W. HASTINGS (DOWNTOWN   1/2 BLOCK FROM SEARS)
VANCOUVER. B.C.
15 8aaao
mmtmMmw^mssm
^^s^s^^

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