director - Joe Harmiston
Set designer - Eileen Diss
Lighting designer - Mick Hughes
Costume designer - Tom Rand
Sound designer - Tom Lishman
Major Arnold - Michael Pennington
Emmi Straube - Geno Lechner
Lieutenant Wills - Christopher Simon
Helmuth Rode - Gawn Grainger
Tamara Sachs - Suzanne Bertish
Wilhelm Furtwangler - Daniel Massey
"It's not hard to see why Pinter was so keen
to direct Harwood's play. The two men had first met in 1953 when
both were members of Donald Wolfit's company, had joined forces
in many a PEN protest on behalf of imprisoned writers, and socially
had remained good friends [...] But beyond the claims of friendship,
you can see why Pinter was so drawn to Harwood's play. It is about
an issue of central concern to him: the role of the artist in
a totalitarian society and the question of wheteher art can ever
Michael Billington, The Life and Work of Harold
Pinter, London: Faber and Faber, 1996, pp.365.
"Harwood holds the scales of justice with
considerable and commendable dexterity. Harold Pinter's extraordinary,
taut and compelling production gives all his arguments full value."
Jack Tinker, The Daily Mail, 4 July 1995.
"Under Harold Pinter's decisive yet unobtrusive
direction, layers of characters and lies peel away as the pressure
Shaun Usher, The Daily Mail, 23 May 1995.
a director Harold is the best I've ever worked with. Unequivocally.
No one creates a pleasanter, more agreeable atmosphere in which
work can take place which is one of the keys to a good director.
His care and precision, his affection for the actors was marvellous.
The way he works is also very interesting. He doesn't give a talk
about the play. He says, 'Let's just find out what it's about.'
He also makes sure the moves are always justified. There's a slightly
static, almost stylised, quality to his work. He will say to an
actor, 'Do you feel that move is absolutely necessary?' or, 'Don't
feel you have to move just because you've been there for a long
time.' He's also a great respecter of the text. HE asked me for
just four changes. Two were very minor, one I rejected and one
was absolutely crucial. There's a moment in the second act when
one of the characters, who's an ex-Nazi, originally said to the
American Major: 'Ask him about von Karajan. That'll be useful.
Ask him about Herbert von Karajan.' Harold said that you want
to put that before and end the scene on: 'Ask him about his private
life.' He was absolutely right. It made a much better end to the
scene and showed that Harold has a very traditional theatrical
Ronald Harwood in Michael Billington, The
Life and Work of Harold Pinter, London: Faber and Faber, 1996,
"Harold Pinter, no less, directs. Furtwangler
would have approved the sustained pianissimi and expressive silences
of the playing, and the excellent ensemble."
Alastair Macaulay, The Financial Times,
23 May 1995.
"Harold Pinter's direction helps to create
the sense of danger and the importance of asking what people can
best do in such predicaments."
Jeremy Kingston, The Times, 24 May 1995.
"Harold Pinter's direction has the tidal
power of clarity and restraint. He and his actors have set their
faces against rhetoric and the temptations of emotional overcharge.
Pinter understands and respects Harwood's decision to let the
characters make their own case without the luxury of seeing themselves
as tragic figures on a world stage. The tragedy is for us to sense."
John Peter, The Sunday Times, 28 May 1995.