Interview: Richmond & Twickenham Comet (14 August 1986)

This page reproduces some of Alan Ayckbourn's significant quotes from the interview.

Ayckbourn - Through Eye Of A Woman

by Graninne O'Kelly

"I wanted to write a play [Woman In Mind] in the first person. It's about the biggest woman's part I have ever written - probably the biggest part full stop."

"The searchlight of London on a play first time out can send you limping back to your desk feeling slightly injured. All my plays up till now have been written for the small theatre. It allows me tremendous artistic control, and probably explains why I have written so many plays. And it gives me the right to fail."

"I started years ago writing plays which were clockwork vehicles, quite broad farces. But as time went on, I became more interested in the nature of laughter and learned to relax and not write quite so manic plays, and I have tended to explore the darker elements of people. I find a great loneliness in people, a great lack of understanding between people. I tend to emphasise mostly the lack of understanding that exists between most men and women."

"He [Dafydd ap Llewellyn in
A Chorus Of Disapproval] is based on a lot of directors. He's quite a small man really, but directors exercise a lot of power, which like all power can be abused. If they could only realise they hold actors in the palm of their hand…"

"I don't like planning too far ahead. That's the nice thing about working in the theatre - the next show is always a surprise."