Harwood, Ronald (8 of 18)  An Oral History of Theatre Design

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  • Recording date

    2005-10-27, 2007-05-16, 2007-05-17, 2007-05-18, 2007-06-12

  • Recording locations

    Interviewee's home, Chelsea

  • Interviewees

    Harwood, Ronald 1934- (speaker, male)

  • Interviewers

    O'Ryan, Lydia (speaker, female)

  • Abstract

    Part 8: ormative impact on RH of SLO’s films “Hamlet”and “Henry V”; anecdote about Rosencrantz and Guildenstern and SLO; effect of reading Graham Green’s “The Power and the Glory”; visits to productions by Repertory Company run by Brian Brook and Petrina Fry; also saw Gwen Francon Davies and Marda Vanne. Mentions seeing Terence Rattigan’s “Flare Path”and “Daddy Longlegs”; also George Formby and various musicals. Impressed by production of “Streetcar Named Desire”; saw “Rigoletto”with Bengiamino Gigli and “Barber of Seville”; mentions Luigi Infantino. Remarks on friendships including Gerald Mosselson (later Masters) with whom built working toy theatre - “The Royal Acropolis”. Refers to Marylebone Cricket Club.[MCC] tour to South Africa under George Mann with Denis Compton, Len Hutton, Alec Bedser. Mentions tennis coaching with Benny von Ryan. Description of education at Seapoint Junior School under Mr. E D Smith and High School; description of uniform and motto “Laborare est orare”; refers to discussion on schooling with Michael Blakemore. Description and importance of royal family’s visit to South Africa in 1947 in battleship HMS Vanguard; birth of RH’s royalist sympathies. Comments on lack of awareness of apartheid; anecdote about segregation; remarks on anti-Semitism and South African political affiliations. RH’s experience of bullying at hands of teacher, J von Rensberg. Description of RH’s senior schooling, including Cambridge Matriculation. Quotes from “Kings and Queens of England”by Eleanor Farjeon. Comments on interior life including rejecting request by Jungian psychiatrist to analyse RH. Remarks on love of performance and participation in school productions; also description of toy theatre and choice of plays including Ibsen, Chekhov and Sheridan. Mentions writing play at school about Sir Francis Drake and his relationship with Thomas Doughty; refers to play about Napoleon. Comments on enjoying attention from performance and the importance of encouragement.

  • Description

    Interview with Ronald Harwood (1934-), theatre designer. Parts 1-4 comprise an interview about the life and work of Richard Negri, as recalled by Ronald Harwood. Parts 5-18 comprise Ronald Harwood's life story.

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