The Browning Version
Rattigan's well-loved play about an unpopular schoolmaster who snatches a last shred of dignity from the collapse of his career and his marriage. Twice filmed (with Michael Redgrave and Albert Finney) and frequently revived.
Andrew Crocker-Harris' wife Millie has become embittered and fatigued by her husband's lack of passion and ambition. On the verge of retirement, and divorce, Andrew is forced to come to terms with the platitude his life has become. Then John Taplow, a previously unnoticed pupil, gives Andrew an unexpected parting gift: a second-hand copy of Robert Browning's translation of Agamemnon – a gift which offers not only a opportunity for redemption, but the chance to gain back some dignity.
The Browning Version was premiered at the Phoenix Theatre, London, in September 1948.
This volume also contains Harlequinade, a farce about a touring theatre troupe, written to accompany The Browning Version in a double-bill under the joint title, Playbill.
This edition includes an authoritative introduction and biographical sketch by Rattigan scholar Dan Rebellato, along with a chronology of his plays.
'The cruel inequalities of love always absorbed Rattigan; not least here – this is a play that has not dated'- The Times