Pinter double-bill at the Ustinov

ONE of Britain’s finest stage and television actors, David Morrissey, leads the cast in a compelling double bill of plays by one of the most influential dramatists of the 20th century, Harold Pinter, at Bath Theatre Royal’s Ustinov studio from Friday 22nd March to Saturday 20th April.

The plays are The Lover and The Collection, which between explore some of the abiding themes of Pinter’s work, the sexual games people play and the way unpredictable events can provoke jealousy, fear or danger.

First staged in 1962, The Lover is a tense one-act play which can be (and has been) interpreted either as serious or as comic. Typically Pinter, it contains both elements. The playwright leads the audience to believe that there are three characters: the wife, the husband and the lover.

The Collection is a 1961 play featuring two couples, James and Stella and Harry and Bill. Ostensibly a comedy, it is laced with Pinteresque ambiguity and implications of threat. It is described as a comedy of suspense and sexual jealousy sparked by an anonymous phone call in the middle of the night.

One of the most versatile stage and screen actors of his generation, David Morrissey is joined by Mathew Horne (best known for Gavin & Stacey) whose recent stage credits include Pinter’s The Homecoming, Claudie Blakley (Lark Rise to Candleford) and Elliot Barnes-Worrell (Small Island, at the National Theatre).

The plays are directed by Lindsay Posner, with the creative team behind the Ustinov’s recent sell-out A View From The Bridge starring Dominic West.