Understanding the playwright’s intentions

How do you understand a playwright’s intentions? You read the play and all supporting material. You do your research and you do your best. If a playwright has defined things with precision, as J B Priestley does in his stage directions for An Inspector Calls, it’s because those details matter. Disregard them at your peril! If the writer wrote with passion and belief, the performers should try to represent that passion.

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Quite simply, my working life has been one of relish, challenge, excitement. Those words are almost, perhaps, truisms, but in fact they are true. Whether it be a poem, a play or a screenplay, if the relish, challenge and excitement in the language and through that language, to character, isn’t there, then nothing’s there and nothing can exist.Harold Pinter

In this clip, playwright Charlotte Keatley discusses her work, My Mother Said I Never Should, and her more recent play, Our Father, and gives an insight into a writer’s viewpoint.