The work of scene writer Cate Blanchett caused men to storm out of the theater

Hare says writers “don’t get” life. “And because we don’t understand it, we’re dying to understand it… That’s probably what all playwrights have in common, a certain curiosity about other people… you have to be interested, you have to want to know.”

Good pieces may be timeless, says Hare, but they absolutely depend on the context in which they are presented. “If you have lived in a communist country for a certain period of time, then a performance by hamlet was the most revolutionary thing anyone could do. if you put hamlet After that, the audience understood that the assassination of the king and the revenge of the father … was effectively a protest against the regime. Hamlet was electric in Russia, Romania or Bulgaria. While when you will see hamlet In Stratford they just say, ‘Oh, Mark Rylance is very good, but he’s not as good as David Tennant’.”


Originally drawn to directing, he took up writing and discovered he had a talent for dialogue. From this developed a lifelong fascination with the formal problems of writing. ‘I’ve been trying to figure out how the hell you do it. And the annoying thing about my age, which a lot of people have, is that I’m just getting the hang of it.”

Sir David Hare chats with Don Watson at the State Library on March 7th. The work of scene writer Cate Blanchett caused men to storm out of the theater

Jaclyn Diaz

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