A stellar ensemble of British stage actors – Sinead Cusack, Janie Dee, Michael Gambon, Jeremy Irons, Stephen Rea, Kenneth Cranham, Charles Dance and Penelope Wilton – will come together next month to perform a rehearsed reading of Harold Pinter’s Celebration, in celebration of the author’s recent 75th birthday and his winning the 2005 Nobel Prize in Literature (See News, 13 Oct 2005) - the first British playwright to do so). It will run for three nights only, from 1 to 3 December 2005, at the West End’s Albery Theatre, with all tickets priced at £28.50.

Celebration is presented by the Gate Theatre, Dublin, which marked Pinter’s birthday last month with productions of Old Times and Betrayal as well as a star-studded weekend series of readings, in which Pinter himself took part. Prior to this year, the Gate has mounted two festivals of Pinter’s work, in 1994 and 1997, and curated a third at the Lincoln Center, New York in 2001. For the West End presentation, the Gate has partnered with producer Sonia Friedman.

In Celebration, which had its world premiere at the Almeida Theatre in 2000, two couples meet to celebrate a wedding anniversary in a restaurant where, at a separate table, a younger couple are raking over infidelities. All of the high-profile Albery cast have appeared in Pinter plays in the past.

In addition to Celebration, Pinter’s most famous works include The Room (1957), The Birthday Party (1958), The Dumb Waiter (1959), The Caretaker (1960), The Lover (1962), The Homecoming (1965), No Man's Land (1975), Mountain Language (1988), Moonlight (1993) and Ashes to Ashes (1996). He was appointed CBE in 1966 and became a Companion of Honour in 2002.

- by Terri Paddock