New Books



Buzz Buzz! Playwrights, Actors and Directors at the National Theatre

Bloomsbury Publishing

‘This is a treasure trove of insight and illumination for aspiring actors, directors and playwrights….It confounds the notion that theatre journalism is essentially shallow and ephemeral….Unlike many interviewers, Croall’s prose style is measured, sober, informative; nothing flash, nothing self-indulgent. This is grown-up reportage.’ – Nick Smurthwaite, Stage


Performing King Lear:
Gielgud to Russell Beale

Bloomsbury Publishing

Based on extensive interviews with a wide range of actors and directors involved with productions of Shakespeare’s great tragedy over the last 50 years. The 20 Lears interviewed include Derek Jacobi, Brian Cox, Oliver Ford Davies, Kathryn Hunter, Michael Pennington, Tim Pigott-Smith, Christopher Plummer, Simon Russell Beale, Donald Sinden and Timothy West. Among the 25 directors who discuss their productions are Nicholas Hytner, Jude Kelly, Jonathan Miller, David Hare, Rupert Goold, Michael Grandage, Adrian Noble, Max Stafford-Clark and Deborah Warner.

‘An illuminating survey of modern approaches to the play.’ – Simon Callow, Guardian

‘A fantastic history of the production of King Lear through the second half of the twentieth century and into the current era.’ –  British Theatre Guide


Performing Hamlet:
Actors in the Modern Age

Bloomsbury Publishing

Hamlet is arguably the most famous play on the planet, and the greatest of all Shakespeare’s works. To play Hamlet represents the supreme challenge for a young actor. Performing Hamlet contains revealing in-depth interviews with five distinguished Hamlets: Adrian Lester, Jude Law, Maxine Peake, Simon Russell Beale and David Tennant. The book also contains interviews with six leading directors of the play: John Caird, Greg Doran, Sarah Frankcom, Simon Godwin, Michael Grandage and Nicholas Hytner, Other performances described include those of Benedict Cumberbatch, Andrew Scott and Paapa Essiedu.

‘I’m so glad to see such a detailed analysis of the work Simon Russell Beale and I did together. The book looks very handsome and has been much admired.’ – John Caird

‘I had a wonderful time reading the book. All the chapters are fascinating.’ – Simon Godwin