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Cock Marks Williams Centenary with Two Debuts

By • West End
Alongside this year’s much-heralded Terrence Rattigan centenary, Kilburn's Cock Tavern Theatre is marking the 100th birthday of another great 20th century playwright, Tennessee Williams, by premiering two previously unperformed plays.

I Never Get Dressed Till After Dark on Sundays, which runs from 4 to 26 March (previews from 1 March) was written in 1973, following Williams’ release from rehab. It’s a play-within-a-play centring on two lovers who struggle amidst the smut and sleaze in the French quarter of New Orleans.

It’s followed by A Cavalier for Milady, which runs from 1 to 23 April (previews from 29 March). One of Williams’ final works, probably completed in 1979, this one act play provides a snapshot of the life of a young, troubled and heavily medicated woman, who the playwright based on his much-loved sister.

The productions are directed by Hamish MacDougall and Gene David Kirk respectively. MacDougall has previously directed The Under Room and Subs, both at the Cock Tavern, while Kirk is the artistic director of Jermyn Street Theatre, where he recently helmed a revival of Williams' The Two-Character Play

Speaking to Whatsonstage.com, Cock Tavern artistic director Adam Spreadbury-Maher said: "In 2011 the world celebrates the 100th birthday of two of the most significant playwrights of the 20th century: one is American and the other British. There are six productions scheduled to mark Terrence Rattigan's birthday ... So what about America's Shakespeare, Tennessee Williams?

"In America there are festivals, conferences and streets being named to mark Tennessee's 100th birthday, and I reckon London has enough stages and enough fans of his work to make this a birthday party the two great men can share."

With many major venues - including the Old Vic, Theatre Royal Haymarket and Chichester Festival Theatre - turning their attention to Rattigan this year, it's been left to the fringe to focus on Williams. Elsewhere, new Notting Hill venue The Print Room will stage another of his later works, Kingdom of Earth, from 29 April to 28 May.


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