Road Scholar : Home
Best of London Theatre on The Queen Mary 2

Program Number: 11996RJ
Start and End Dates:
5/9/2015 - 5/21/2015; 5/16/2016 - 5/29/2016; 7/5/2016 - 7/17/2016; 9/7/2016 - 9/20/2016; 10/10/2016 - 10/22/2016;
Duration: 12 nights
Location: United States/England
Price starting at: $4,799.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Adventure Afloat Study Cruise; Ocean Voyages; Independent City Discoveries Activity Level: t (see description)
Meals: 31; 12 Breakfasts, 7 Lunches, 12 Dinners    
Meal Options: Low Fat; Vegetarian; Low Salt; Gluten Free    

Theater and the performing arts take center stage on this enriching voyage from New York City to London aboard the magnificent Queen Mary 2. Immerse yourself in the history and practice of theatre with onboard theatre expert Giles Ramsay, who explores the development of drama from Greek tragedy to the modern musical. In London, experience the arts first-hand as you enjoy theater productions ranging from the classic to the cutting edge and gain insight from leading theatre professionals.

Activity Particulars

Walking up to 2 hours/2 miles per day on city streets and in galleries. Many theatres and historic buildings in London have no elevators and are not accessible.

Details of selected performances are sent four weeks prior to departure date.

Itinerary At-a-Glance

New York City, 1 night; aboard Queen Mary 2, 7 nights; London (England), 4 nights.

Days 1-2: Arrival New York City / embark Queen Mary 2:

Meet fellow Road Scholars during a welcome meeting and dinner. The next afternoon, board the elegant Queen Mary 2 as we set sail for London. Lodging: Downtown Manhattan hotel.

Days 3-8: At Sea:

Enjoy a wide variety of enriching ship-board activities, including the on-board planetarium, art classes, ballroom dancing and more. Theatre producer and director Giles Ramsay explores the art of theater and the process of production from text into performance. Gain expert understanding into the historic roots of European theatre ranging from medieval drama, through Marlowe and Shakespeare, to Wilde, Coward, Pinter and Stoppard.

Days 9-13: Southampton (England) / disembark / coach via Winchester to London / departure:

Disembark in Southampton and travel by coach via Winchester to London. Tonight, enjoy a theatre performance, which may range from a major classic to a contemporary comedy. Morning brings an interactive political discussion with a top BBC journalist, then free time to experience London on your own. Attend another evening play ¬— perhaps a major musical in the West End or a leading show at London’s flagship National Theatre. Explore The Victoria and Albert Museum, the world’s largest museum of art and design. Learn about rehearsing a play during an interactive workshop led by professional actors. Attend our third theatre performance this evening. The next day, visit The National Gallery and take afternoon tea at The Phoenix Artists Club, located in rehearsal rooms once occupied by Noel Coward and Laurence Olivier. We round off our trip with an in-depth discussion of shows we have seen with a leading London theatre critic, then enjoy our final theatre performance.

Queen Mary 2

At 1,132 feet long and 131 feet wide and cruising at 28.5 knots, the Queen Mary 2 can carry 2,592 passengers. Public areas linked by elevators include restaurants, bars, library, theater, casino, gym, pool and more. Dining in the Britannia Restaurant.

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Giles Ramsay

Giles Ramsay is an independent theatre director and producer who specializes in creating new work with artists in developing countries. He is the Founding Director of the charity Developing Artists, a Fellow of St. Chad’s College, Durham University and Course Leader in Theatre at The Victoria and Albert Museum in London. He has devised and instructed on Road's Scholar programs since the early 1990's and has run theatre projects in countries ranging from Kosovo to Zimbabwe.
Meals and Lodgings
   Millenium Hilton
  New York, New York, USA 1 night
   Aboard The Queen Mary II
  Queen Mary II, USA 7 nights
   Kenilworth Hotel
  London, UK:England 4 nights
 Millenium Hilton
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: The Millenium Hilton hotel is conveniently located in Lower Manhattan right in the heart of New York City’s bustling financial district within easy reach of Wall Street and the Statue of Liberty. The hotel is located just a few steps from the National 9/11 Memorial and is surrounded by the renowned New York neighborhoods of SoHo, Tribeca and Greenwich Village.
  Contact info: 55 Church Street
New York, NY 10007 USA
phone: 212-693-2001
  Room amenities: Relax in a contemporary guest room offering a king-sized bed, 42-inch plasma screen TV and cordless telephones, AM/FM radio, hair dryer, coffee maker and "The Bed" by Hilton.
  Facility amenities: Liquid Assets cocktail bar. 24-hour fitness center and heated, glass-enclosed indoor pool overlooking Ground Zero. Automated Teller (ATM), Baggage Storage , Complimentary WiFi in Lobby , Concierge Desk, Foreign Currency Exchange , Gift Shop, Laundry/Valet Service , Lounge , Multi-Lingual Staff,News Stand, Room Service, Safety Deposit Box, WiFi - $12.95/day in Guestroom (2014 price), 24 hour business center.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: TBC. For additional pre and post program accommodations, please contact Road Scholar Travel Services at (800) 241-1404 or via email to
  Check in time: 3:00 PM

 Aboard The Queen Mary II
Type: Cruise Ship
  Ship Information: Having made her debut in January of 2004, the stylish and grand 12-deck, transatlantic liner Queen Mary 2, built by Cunard and under British Registry, represents the pinnacle of maritime achievement. At 1,132' long and 131' wide (150,000 tons) and cruising at 28.5 knots she can carry 3,090 passengers (of whom a maximum of 44 are Participants). Group dining in the Britannia Restaurant.
  Contact info: Queen Mary
New York, NY xxx USA
phone: xxx--
  Room amenities: Bathrobes with matching slippers, a hairdryer, refrigerator, safe, data port, direct dial phone, an interactive TV, daily shipboard newspaper, nightly turndown service and 24-hour room service. 220V British 3-pin and 110V 2-pin sockets.
  Facility amenities: Public areas linked by elevators include restaurants, bars, library, lounges, theater, casino, spa club, gym, sun decks and pool. Canyon Ranch Spa Club.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes

 Kenilworth Hotel
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: Within easy walking distance of the theatres, Covent Garden Opera House, and the restaurants of Soho. The shops of Oxford Street are close by, and just 50 metres down the road you can explore the delights of the British Museum
  Contact info: 97 Great Russell Street
London,  WC1B 3LB UK:England
phone: +011 44 207 637 3477
  Room amenities: Air-Conditioning, Pay Movies Satellite TV Direct Dial number with voicemail In room safe In room bar Dry cleaning and laundry Iron and ironing board Trouser press
  Facility amenities: Creation Restaurant serving modern British food with a Far East influence Creation Bar, with lounge Fitness room with gym equipment
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights after: Confirmed in materials Form to be completed with the 1st set of materials.
  Check out time: 10:00 AM

Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Independent transfers to New York hotel. There is a welcome meeting with Giles Ramsay, Course Director, in the hotel at 6:00pm followed by dinner with 1 glass of wine at 7:00pm. You will be staying at Millenium Hilton that night.
  End of Program:
The programme ends after breakfast in the hotel in London. Breakfast ends at 10:00am and check out is by 11:00am. You will be staying at Kenilworth Hotel the night before.
  Required documents:
The Participant Information Form is required. **PLEASE NOTE: Cunard requires that you register online in order to receive your E-ticket(s) and cruise documents. You should do this when you receive your final program materials about 5 weeks prior to departure, your booking number and cabin assignment will be included with these materials. Please go to to register. 1. At the top of Cunard’s homepage, click on MANAGE BOOKING (top of page–2nd tab from right) 2. On the next page, click LOG IN TO VOYAGE PERSONALISER 3. You will need to Log In with your First and Last Name and Booking Reference 4. Once logged in you will need to accept Cunard’s Terms & Conditions 5. You are now in your Voyage Personaliser. To enter the necessary information, on the left hand side, click on PERSONAL DETAILS (under Your Details) and enter the required information 6. Repeat for Address, Passport and Emergency Contacts 7. Once completed, you are able to view your Travel Summary and e-Ticket (once you are paid in full) **You must print your own Queen Mary II Luggage Tags, they are required by the ship porters so your bags can make their way safely to your ship cabin.**
  Parking availability:
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
  Train or bus availability: Buses and Amtrak trains are available to New York City. Nearest underground station in London is Tottenham Court Road.
To Start of Program
  Location:  New York, New York
  Transportation to site: The first night of this programme is spent at the Millennium Hilton Lower Manhattan, adjacent to the WTC. No transfers to this site are provided by Road Scholar and so you will need to make your own arrangements on arrival. Taxis are generally available and reliable. A taxi will cost approx. USD55. The hotel is located in Lower Manhattan, just blocks from subway stations A, C, E, J, M, Z, 4, 5, 1, 2, R and the New Jersey Path train.
  From End of Program
  Location:  London
  Nearest airport:  Heathrow and Gatwick
  Transportation from site: Trains and underground available. Transportation will be provided to Heathrow at the end of the program for participants who are departing on group departure day. Complete the Participant Information Form on-line, or in the preparatory materials and return to Road Scholar in the UK.
Elevation Note: This program takes place at sea level.

The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrival, Welcome
(Saturday, May 9)
 Afternoon: Independent arrivals. Welcome meeting in the hotel at 6:00 pm.
 Dinner: In the hotel at 7:00pm.
 Evening: Enjoy a free evening to explore.
Accommodations: Millenium Hilton
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Embark Queen Mary 2
(Sunday, May 10)
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Enjoy a free morning on your own, or embark on an optional visit to the World Trade Center Memorial and Museum.
 Lunch: You are free to enjoy lunch on your own. You may wish to take a late lunch onboard ship.
 Afternoon: Group transfer by coach to embarkation of Queen Mary 2 at about 2 p.m.
 Dinner: Onboard ship.
 Evening: Free to begin exploring the magnificent Queen Mary 2 and its grand array of activities and entertainment.
Accommodations: Aboard The Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 3: Multi-media presentation by Giles Ramsay
(Monday, May 11)
 Breakfast: Onboard ship.
 Morning: Enjoy a variety of shipboard-enrichment activities during each of your mornings and evenings aboard as you sail to London and your theatrical learning adventure. Experience the Cunard Insights guest lecture series, which explores historical and contemporary issues presented by speakers including explorers, academics, former ambassadors and politicians, historians and scientists, novelists, biographers and award-winning actors and film makers. If you are an avid reader, take advantage of the Book Club and literary discussions with librarians, or choose from a wide range of classes such as watercolors, computer lessons, wine tasting, ballroom dancing and more, or enjoy bridge and board games. On deck, games and more active entertainment are available. You can exercise in the fitness center, walk around the Promenade Deck, swim in one of the pools, play tennis, or take exercise classes such as yoga and Pilates. In the Royal Court Theatre, enjoy singers and dancers in stage shows. There are movies in the cinema, and the bars and lounges throughout the ship feature pianists, jazz bands and string quartets. Hear the Julliard School jazz series and take part in the Royal Night Theme Balls. Polish your acting skills with one-hour workshops with actors who spent three years at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Or simply take Afternoon Tea and enjoy the Maritime Quest exhibition throughout the ship.
 Lunch: Onboard ship.
 Afternoon: To prepare for your theatre experience in London Giles Ramsay will present the first of a series of dynamic and informative lectures. Throughout the crossing topics might include: The Origins of Theatre - from Cave Paintings to the Greeks; Elizabethan Plays and Playhouses; The Trinity - Ibsen, Strindberg and Chekhov; How to Direct a Play; Contemporary British Theatre - a Second Golden Age?
 Dinner: Onboard ship.
 Evening: Enjoy an array of shipboard activities.
Accommodations: Aboard The Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Lecture by Giles Ramsay and Welcome Cocktail Party
(Tuesday, May 12)
 Breakfast: Onboard ship.
 Morning: Enjoy a variety of shipboard-enrichment activities. Consider taking a class such as watercolor painting or ballroom dancing, enjoying one of the ship's swimming pools, and more.
 Lunch: Onboard.
 Afternoon: Giles Ramsay presents the multi-media lecture: "Medieval Drama Reformation and Christopher Marlowe.” Also, enjoy a Welcome Cocktail Party.
 Dinner: Onboard.
 Evening: Enjoy a variety of shipboard-enrichment activities, including many kinds of evening entertainment featuring dancing, music and more.
Accommodations: Aboard The Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Lecture by Giles Ramsay on Shakespeare
(Wednesday, May 13)
 Breakfast: Onboard.
 Morning: Enjoy an exceptional array of shipboard-enrichment activities.
 Lunch: Onboard.
 Afternoon: To continue your preparation for a fascinating theatre adventure in London, Giles Ramsay presents the lecture "Shakespeare's Life and Verse."
 Dinner: Onboard.
 Evening: Enjoy a variety of shipboard-enrichment activities. Check the QM2 schedule to see which night you can experience a Royal Night Theme Ball, donning your formal dancing attire and taking to the floor in a sea of glittering ball gowns and tuxedos accompanied by the sounds of a wonderful orchestra.
Accommodations: Aboard The Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Lecture by Giles Ramsay on "History of British Theatre"
(Thursday, May 14)
 Breakfast: Onboard.
 Morning: Enjoy a variety of shipboard-enrichment activities, perhaps exercising your mind playing bridge with new friends or trying out a board game, then exercising your body in the QM2's fitness center. Your activity choices are plentiful.
 Lunch: Onboard.
 Afternoon: Giles Ramsay presents a colorful and informative lecture.
 Dinner: Onboard.
 Evening: Relax on the deck enjoying the camaraderie of new friends. Or choose one of the many kinds of nightly entertainment found on this elegant ship. You will never find yourself without plenty of nightly options.
Accommodations: Aboard The Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Insight on Theatre
(Friday, May 15)
 Breakfast: Onboard.
 Morning: You may choose to enjoy a yoga or Pilates class with one of the QM2's expert fitness instructors, or improve your skills in a computer class or one of many other class offerings. Choose from the plentiful shipboard activities offered on this grand ship.
 Lunch: Onboard.
 Afternoon: Theater producer and director Giles Ramsay continues his expert insights into British theatre.
 Dinner: Onboard.
 Evening: Choose to relax taking in a movie in the ship's cinema, or take it up a notch at the G32 Night Club with a popular themed night from the 1960s, '70s or '80s. You have many options to experience all the QM2 has to offer.
Accommodations: Aboard The Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Giles Ramsay lecture "The 20th Century: Wilde, Coward, Pinter, Orton, Osborne"
(Saturday, May 16)
 Breakfast: Onboard.
 Morning: On your final day aboard the QM2, perhaps you will glean final bits of knowledge from a class you've been taking. Maybe you're in need of a rigorous walk around the Promenade Deck. Or perhaps you and new friends have been keeping track of your wins and losses playing bridge and are hoping to swing things in your favor. There are ample shipboard activities from which to choose.
 Lunch: Onboard.
 Afternoon: Giles Ramsay continues his series of exceptional lectures with "The 20th Century: Wilde, Coward, Pinter, Orton, Osborne."
 Dinner: Onboard.
 Evening: On your final evening aboard ship before making port in Southampton, you may want to have a quiet night spent with new friends. Or perhaps you'll toast the last of your nights at sea, marveling at all you've done and learned while crossing the Atlantic.
Accommodations: Aboard The Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: Arrive England, Winchester Cathedral, Theatre Performance
(Sunday, May 17)

Note: Walking and standing of up to one hour in Winchester Cathedral; some steps, stone floors. The Duchess Theatre has 20 steps down to seating in the stalls.

 Breakfast: Onboard.
 Morning: Disembark Southampton and transfer by coach to London via Winchester. Experience a field trip to the magnificent Winchester Cathedral, which is one of the largest cathedrals in England and is the longest Gothic cathedral in Europe.
 Lunch: Lunch will be taken out in Winchester.
 Afternoon: Continue the transfer to London.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: Perfomance: The Play That Goes Wrong at The Duchess Theatre - The Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society attempt to put on a 1920s’ murder mystery, but as the title suggests, everything that can go wrong… does, as the accident prone thesps battle on against all the odds to get to their final curtain call. This brilliant new laugh out loud comedy performed by Mischief Theatre Company has enjoyed two successful runs in the West End and was the sell out smash hit of the Edinburgh Festival with its sensational reviews, numerous accolades and awards. The Play That Goes Wrong is guaranteed to leave you aching with laughter! Running time: 2 hours 5 minutes, with interval.
Accommodations: Kenilworth Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10: A top national journalist speaks. Theatre performance
(Monday, May 18)

Note: The Wyndhams Theatre has 21 steps down to seating in the stalls. Induction hearing loop is available.

 Breakfast: Full English and continental breakfast in the hotel.
 Morning: Enjoy a captivating interactive discussion on the "State of the Nation" with one of the UK's leading political journalists. Examining the headlines of the day this session will put past and present political issues into startling focus.
 Lunch: Enjoy lunch on your own.
 Afternoon: Enjoy a free afternoon on your own in the great city of London to see and experience its top attractions, including the British Museum, Tate Modern, Madame Tussauds, the Tower of London, the Science Museum and the Natural History Museum.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: Performance: American Buffalo at the Wyndham's Theatre - Damian Lewis , John Goodman and Tom Sturridge star a major new revival of David Mamet’s gripping 1975 play American Buffalo directed by Daniel Evans at Wyndham’s Theatre for a strictly limited season. Winning the New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award for best play, American Buffalo examines the fickle nature of honour among thieves. As three small-time crooks, Donny Dubrow, Walter “Teach” Cole and Bobby plan one big-time heist, a tragedy of errors spins this razor-sharp and darkly funny play into a blistering account of divided loyalties, insatiable greed…and a coveted Buffalo nickel.
Accommodations: Kenilworth Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 11: Victoria and Albert Museum. Theatre workshop. Theatre performance
(Tuesday, May 19)

Note: The Apollo has 12 steps to the Dress Circle.

 Breakfast: Full English and continental breakfast in the hotel.
 Morning: On a field trip, experience the world-famous Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A), new home to the theatre collection. Theatre and performance galleries are dedicated to the performing arts, displaying works of art, costumes, ephemera, video recordings, puppets, posters and photographs. The V&A's Theatre Collections hold the UK's national collection of material about live performance in the UK since Shakespeare's day, covering drama, dance, musical theatre, circus, music hall, rock and pop, and other forms of live entertainment. The collections were founded in the 1920s when a private collector, Gabrielle Enthoven, donated her extensive collection of theatrical designs, memorabilia, books and photographs to the Museum. She continued to add to her collection, and worked on it as a museum volunteer until her death in 1950. Since that period, the collection has continued to grow, and has provided a home for many other significant objects and archives. Between 1987 and 2007, some of this material was housed at the V&A's branch museum in Covent Garden, the Theatre Museum. New galleries devoted to the performing arts opened at the V&A in South Kensington in 2009.
 Lunch: Enjoy lunch on your own to explore local fare.
 Afternoon: The Rehearsal Room – a practical workshop. Workshop objectives: To provide an engaging, practical and fun introduction to the process of rehearsing theatre. To demonstrate that the rehearsal room is a space for exploration and a safe place to try out alternatives away from an audience. To highlight the range of choices actors and directors have available to them when approaching text. Andrew Pugsley, workshop leader, studied acting at Circle in the Square Theatre School in New York. As a performer he has recently been working with ‘Showstopper! The Improvised Musical’ on the West End and on BBC Radio 4. He teaches acting and improvisation classes, most recently at The Bridge Drama School and with opera and musical theatre students at The Advanced Performer’s Studio. He runs workshops on creativity and communication for corporate clients, and has also worked with aspiring film makers, facilitating workshops at the London Film School.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: Performance: The Audience at The Apollo Theatre - Ready for a 2015 revival to coincide with the general election, The Audience is a cutting piece of theatre that imagines the many secret and often tense meetings between the Queen and the Prime Ministers that have served the country during her rein. From Churchill to Cameron, we see the various relationships between the Monarch and the various leader’s of the country. Starring Kristin Scott Thomas. Running time: 2 hours 20 minutes, with interval.
Accommodations: Kenilworth Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 12: Afternoon tea with a theatre critic. Theatre performance
(Wednesday, May 20)

Note: The Vaudeville Theatre has 6 steps down to the Stalls.

 Breakfast: Full English and continental breakfast in the hotel.
 Morning: Experience a self-guided field trip to an art gallery such as the National Gallery.
 Lunch: Enjoy lunch on your own to savor local fare.
 Afternoon: Enjoy afternoon tea at The Phoenix Artists Club. This lively and nostalgic private theatre club is located in the original dressing and rehearsal rooms of the Phoenix Theatre where Laurence Olivier made his debut on stage in the 1930s in “Private Lives” with Noel Coward and Gertrude Lawrence. We round off our trip with an in-depth discussion of the shows we have seen with a leading London theatre critic.
 Dinner: The enhanced afternoon tea will replace an early dinner.
 Evening: Performance: Oppenheimer at the Vaudeville Theatre. 1939: fascism spreads across Europe, Franco marches on Barcelona and two German chemists discover the processes of atomic fission. In Berkeley, California, theoretical physicists recognise the horrendous potential of this new science: a weapon that draws its power from the very building blocks of the universe. The ambitious and charismatic J Robert Oppenheimer finds himself uniquely placed to spearhead the largest scientific undertaking in all of human history. Determined to cast off his radical past and struggling with tempestuous relationships with his colleagues, wife and mistress, Oppenheimer finds himself thrust into a position of power, racing to create a weapon so devastating that it would bring about an end not just to the Second World War, but to all war. Running time: 2 hours 35 minutes, with interval.
Accommodations: Kenilworth Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 13: Departures
(Thursday, May 21)
 Breakfast: Breakfast included.
 Morning: Transfers to London Heathrow Airport for departure flights home.
Meals Included: Breakfast
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List

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The Medieval Theatre

Author: Glynne Wickham

Description: Glynne Wickham's important history of the development of dramatic art in Christian Europe. Professor Wickham surveys the foundations on which this dramatic art was built: the architecture, costumes and ceremonial of the imperial court at Byzantium, the liturgies of countires in the Eastern and Western Empires and the triumph of the Roman rite and the Romanesque style in Western art. Within this context Professor Wickham describes three major influences upon the drama: religion, recreation and commerce.

The State of the Nation

Author: Michael Billington

Description: Michael Billington's new book looks at post-war Britain from a theatrical perspective. It examines the constant interplay between theatre and society from the resurgent optimism of the Attlee years to the satire boom of the Sixties and the growth of political theatre under Tony Blair in the post-Iraq period. Written by Britain's longest-serving theatre critic, the book also offers a passionate defence of the dramatist as the medium's key creative figure. Controversial, witty and informed, State of the Nation offers a fresh and challenging look at the vast upheavals that have taken place in Britain and its theatre in the course of sixty turbulent years.

The Year of the King

Author: Anthony Sher

Description: "'One of the finest books I have ever read on the process of acting' Time Out; 'This is a most wonderfully authentic account of the experience of creating a performance' Sunday Times; 'A brilliant compulsive account' Michael Billington, Guardian

Will In the World

Author: Stephen Greenblatt

Description: With something of the vigour of the Bard’s writing, Greenblatt takes us through the bawdy, teeming Bankside district (centuries before it became a tourist destination), and the Machiavellian, dangerous world of the court--in fact, all the splendour and misery of the Elizabethan age--and at the centre of it all, its greatest artist.

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