Exiles by James Joyce, The Mermaid Theatre, London, and The Aldwych Theatre (RSC)

"You're a brave man to take on Exiles. I understand your excitement. I often wondered how it could be done."

Samuel Beckett, letter to Harold Pinter, 21 April 1969, personal archive.

"All honour to Harold Pinter for lifting the veil and revealing the treasure."

Frank Marcus, The Sunday Telegraph, 15 November 1970.

"In his production of Exiles, Harold Pinter has done a service to a floundering lost cause, perhaps as important to the contemporary theatre as his own plays. He has lifted the lid of the coffin of one of the greatest plays of our time, revevied an interest in the community supper of the Idea, and I, for one, feel ashamed and trivialized, but also replenished."

David Zane Mairowitz, Village Voice, 18 November 1971.

"A masterly affair played sotto voce with every phrase and every pause microscopically gauged and without a single superfluous gesture, so that even the removal of a pair of gloves was invested with emotional significance."

Michael Billington, The Life and Work of Harold Pinter, London: Faber and Faber, 1996, p.211.

"The theatre was crammed with all ages and lifestyles, listening so intently you could hear a pin drop. Partly that's Pinter's doing. Hushed, deliberate, limpid as crystal, his production forces attention to every murmur of the characters, and in the silences between them you hear the murmur of their hearts."

Ronald Bryden, The Observer, 29 November 1970.

"Mr Pinter has grafted on to Joyce's fundamentally unconversational dialogue [...] something of his own, orchestrating the talk with beautifully judged pauses that bring out its nuances effectively."

B. A. Young, The Financial Times, 13 November 1970.

"The scene in which, having allowed herself to be kissed by her 'seducer', Bertha then meticulously reports all that happened to her husband is of astonishing boldness: there is much here of Albee, much also of Ruth's nonchalance about sex in Pinter's own The Homecoming. On one level this is uncompromisingly honest Edwardian free thinking, on another it is sexual fantasy right out of Pinter's The Lover."

Martin Esslin, Plays and Players, January 1971.

"Although Pinter himself strenuously denies any direct cause and effect, the experience of working on Exiles also seems to have permeated his artistic imagination. He sat down to write Old Times in the winter of 1970 while saturated in Joyce's play; and while the two works are obviously very different, both deal with the contest between two figures for the soul and body of a third, and wit the ultimate unpossessability of the triumphant heroine. Exiles also planted seeds which were to germinate many years later in Betrayal, in that it is the 'lover' Robert Hand who feels that it is he who has been deceived by the complicity between husband and wife about his advances."

Michael Billington, The Life and Work of Harold Pinter, London: Faber and Faber, 1996, pp.210-1.

Back to Directing main page
Amazon   Faber & Faber   Slate   Royal National Theatre   Comedie Francaise   Ticketmaster.co.uk   Samuel french
Internal Links: Plays | Films | Biography | Poetry | Politics | Acting | Directing | Publications | Calendar | Links | Forum | Archive | Home
External Links: Faber and Faber | Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk | National Theatre | Comedie-Francaise | Gate Theatre | Ticketmaster | Auteurs.net | Slate | Amnesty
Other Items: The Observer | Letter to the Independent | Depleted Uranium | One For The Road | No Mans Homecoming | New World Order | Degree Speech
Harold Pinter's work is represented by Judy Daish Associates Limited - and applications for all performances and uses of Harold Pinter's work (including amateur and professional stage performances, radio broadcasts, television transmissions and readings and use of extracts) need to be addressed to them in the first instance and in advance of finalizing your plans. Judy Daish Associates will then contact the Estate of Harold Pinter (Lady Antonia Fraser Pinter) if appropriate. The Estate should not be contacted directly for permissions. Please do not assume that a licence or permission will be forthcoming as there are sometimes conflicts between permission requests.
© Harold Pinter 2000 - 2012 All Rights Reserved | Disclaimer