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Looking Back in Sorrow and Anger

May 8, 2017

conradbrunstrom

1956

Today is the anniversary of the debut performance of Look Back in Anger at the Royal Court Theatre in London.   This apparently seismic cultural event has been brilliantly and perhaps definitively de-mystified and theoretically reconfigured by my old friend Dan Rebellato in his important book 1956 and All That.  Nobody gets under the skin of how theatrical language and culture was actually experienced in the post-war period better than Dan Rebellato.  But mostly on this anniversary I think about my Dad.

My Dad was not especially invested in Theatre in 1956.  Nor was he a Londoner.  But he did claim to have seen the initial 1956 production of Look Back in Anger.  I know a lot of people made this claim – so many that fire regulation must have been completely neglected as at least three people must have occupied every available seat in the house.  The…

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