Alan Plater at ITV
Jarrow-born Alan Plater was one of Britain’s most cherished playwrights. Equally at home either adapting existing works or crafting his own stories, the pinnacle of his prolific output is arguably the highly successful Beiderbecke trilogy starring James Bolam and Barbara Flynn. Plater excelled in the creation of credible, engagingly ordinary characters embroiled in drama and intrigue (exemplified in Beiderbecke’s jazz-loving Geordie woodwork teacher, Trevor Chaplin); with a dry humour, class consciousness and frequent acknowledgement of the north-south divide, his skilful dialogue has been described as combining ‘The voice of Coronation Street with the spirit of Chekhov’. The winner of three BAFTA Awards, he received a CBE in 2005 and the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007.
This anthology celebrates the diversity of Alan Plater’s work for ITV, with a collection of single plays and classic episodes featuring outstanding performances by Helen Mirren, Kenneth Branagh, James Bolam, Alison Steadman, Michael Gambon, Dennis Waterman and Ray Brooks, among many others.
The Beiderbecke Affair: What I Don’t Understand Is This…
Jazz fan Trevor Chaplin wants only one thing: a set of Bix Beiderbecke records.
Oranges and Lemons: Brotherly Love
An ex-docker is grieved that his two sons seem irreconcilable.
Play for Love: The Party of the First Part
Peter makes sure his eighteenth birthday party is one that his guests won’t forget.
The Loner: Dawson’s Complaint
Dawson is a man who aims is to change the world. This is the story of his failure.
Two plays set in different eras examine polarised attitudes towards D.H. Lawrence.
Orphan Christina learns - painfully - the art of living among men.
Shades of Darkness: The Intercessor
A writer lodging in a ‘quiet’ house is disturbed by the sound of a child crying.
Calendar People: Playwrights
Austin Mitchell interviews Alan Plater, Alan Ayckbourn and Colin Welland.