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This first volume in the Coward Collection contains four plays written within a two year period when Coward and the century were still in their 20s. The volume is introduced by Sheridan Morley, Coward's first biographer. Hay Fever, a comedy of bad manners, concerns a weekend with friends of the Bliss family, who have all been invited independently for a weekend at their country house near Maidenhead. The Vortex was a controversial drama in its time, introducing drug-addiction onto the stage at a time when alcoholism was barely mentioned. Fallen Angels, which is written for two star actresses was described as 'degenerate', 'vile', 'obscene', 'shocking' - the second half of the play is entirely taken up with an alcoholic duologue between the two women. Easy Virtue is an elegant, laconic tribute to a lost world of drawing-room dramas, no other writer went more directly to the jugular of that moralistic, tight-lipped but fundamentally hypocritical 20s society. "He is simply a phenomenon, and one that is unlikely to occur ever again in theatre history" Terence Rattigan

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780413460608
ISBN-10: 0413460606
Format: Paperback
(198mm x 129mm x 20mm)
Pages: 320
Imprint: Methuen Drama
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Publish Date: 6-Sep-1979
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Noel Coward

Noel Coward made his name as a playwright with The Vortex (1924), in which he also appeared. His numerous other successful plays included Hay Fever, Private Lives, Design for Living, and Blithe Spirit. During the war he wrote screenplays such as Brief Encounter (1944) and This Happy Breed (1942). His volumes of verse, autobiography and letters have all been published to acclaim by Methuen Drama. Coward was knighted in 1970 and died three years later in Jamaica.

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