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Tributes paid to veteran director Bill Bryden, who has died aged 79

The director oversaw many seminal stage productions in England and Scotland

Peter Wood, Bill Bryden, Peter Hall, Michael Bogdanov, Peter Gill, Ian McKellen, Edward Petherbridge, David Hare, Richard Eyre
© Photo by Nobby Clark

Tributes have poured in for director Bill Bryden, who has died aged 79.

Bryden worked at a large number of venues from the 1970s onwards, with seminal productions including The Plough and the Stars at the National Theatre in 1977 (where he was associate director), one of a score of productions he mounted in the early years of the venue.

He also oversaw the world premiere of David Mamet's much-loved drama Glengarry Glen Ross, brought to the stage in 1983 at the Mermaid Theatre.

Formerly an artistic director at the Lyceum, he was a big advocate for site-specific performance, having transformed spaces in Glasgow into immersive auditoria, and in 1985 won the Olivier Award for Best Director for his seminal production of The Mysteries.

Bill Bryden and Nobby Clark
© National Theatre

He was described by the Lyceum's current artistic director David Greig as "perhaps the greatest Scottish theatre director of his generation", while the National Theatre said in a statement: "We've very sad to hear that director Bill Bryden has died. Over his long career at the National Theatre he directed shows including: Il Campiello, The Mysteries, Lark Rise, Candleford and Glengarry Glen Ross. Our thoughts are with his loved ones and he will be much missed."

Morris Bright MBE said: "So sad to hear screenwriter and acclaimed stage director Bill Bryden CBE has died aged 79. The loveliest of men with a most delicious Scottish brogue. Thoughts and prayers are with his wife Angela Douglas."