Nicholas Hytner, artistic director of the National Theatre – which today won four of the Critics’ Circle Awards, two for his own premiere of Alan Bennett’s The History Boys - spoke passionately about freedom of artistic expression following Birmingham Rep’s December cancellation of Behzti and the BBC’s controversial airing last month of the NT musical Jerry Springer - The Opera, both of which attracted headline-grabbing protests from religious groups.
“I claim unequivocally the right to be as offensive as I choose… and, on behalf of my colleagues, to tell any story we choose,” declared Hytner, adding that in modern society “nobody has the right not to be offended”.
CRITICS’ CIRCLE WINNERS’ REMARKS
Winners also had their say on receiving their various awards. Amongst them:
- by Terri Paddock