Interview: Cambridge Evening News (13 May 1988)

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

Alan Finds The Right Balance

by Ian Macfarlane

"People think it's wonderful that I happen to have Scarborough, but the fact is that I got the theatre because the man I most admired,
Stephen Joseph, died, and it was going to close until I was asked to take over. But I've found that owning one's theatre is wonderful. There's nobody breathing down your neck, and although you've got to balance the books financially, I find it all so interesting."

"I retained a lot of admiration for Osborne. Everything after that had to be slightly anarchic."

"I think I've changed my image as I've grown older. My early plays were very manic, very plot orientated. There was always the desperate feeling of keeping it going, so I tended to write towards farce, which was a silly medium to start with, and probably the most difficult of theatre writing there is."

"When I've decided on the title, I tell my theatre company that we will be starting rehearsals on a certain date, and then I set about writing the play. It's a system that has always worked for me."

"I started to write and then
direct and eventually the two careers came together - accidentally as most things do."

"I've flitted in an out of fashion. My greatest satisfaction comes from being able to make people laugh. If a play of mine works, and everything seems to come together, I get a wonderful feeling of being the host at a perfect party."