The Birthday Party
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Stanley Webber is visited in his boarding house by strangers, Goldberg and McCann. An innocent-seeming birthday party for Stanley turns into a nightmare.
The Birthday Party was first performed in 1958 and is now a modern classic, produced and studied throughout the world.
Mr Pinter, on the evidence of this work, possesses the most original, disturbing and arresting talent in theatrical London.
It combines the structure of a rep thriller with the guilt mechanisms of Kafka's The Trial ... Pinter's enduring, ultimately undefinable play, which left the critics floundering in 1958, has the power of all first-rate art to acknowledge the past and reflect the future while existing in the tangible present.
A darkly comic masterpiece . . . Laughs aren't presumed upon – they arise of their own accord, as does a mounting dread, achieved by Pinter's ingeniously disconcerting way with words.
A decade on from his death, Harold Pinter remains pretty much incomparable as a playwright . . . a brilliant play
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