Pinter’s Old Times play to open at the Harold Pinter theatre


Old Times is a dramatic play by Harold Pinter. It was first performed by the Royal Shakespeare Company at the Aldwych Theatre in London in 1971 directed by Peter Hall. Harold Pinter dedicated the play to Hall to celebrate his 40th birthday. Peter Hall also directed the Broadway première, which opened later that year in 1971. Old Times has enjoyed huge critical acclaim.

Now Old Times the play is back in London’s West End at the aptly named Harold Pinter theatre (formerly the Comedy theatre) for a strictly limited season for twelve weeks only from the 12th January 2013 to the 6th April 2013.

The show in London will star Kristin Scott Thomas, Rufus Sewell and Lia Williams.

Star of stage and screen, Kristin Scott Thomas who famously played Princess Diana, will once again be directed by Ian Rickson, following their previous successful collaborations on the critically-acclaimed productions of Harold Pinter’s Betrayal and Anton Chekhov’s The Seagull.

Award-winning actresses Kristin Scott Thomas and Lia Williams (The Homecoming, Skylight, Oleanna) will alternate the roles of Kate and Anna, which makes for an interesting casting choice and indeed an intriguing extra dynamic to the show.

They will be joined by fellow award-winner, comedian Rufus Sewell, who was last seen on stage in Tom Stoppard’s Rock ‘N’ Roll.

Harold Pinter’s play Old Times is a seductive and compelling drama. Locked away in a secluded farmhouse, Kate, Deeley and Anna reminisce about their early days together in London, but with conflicting memories and underlying sexual tensions, the past suddenly feels vividly present.

The play begins with married couple Kate and Deeley discussing Kate’s old friend Anna, who is coming to visit them. Deeley has never met Anna and Kate explains that Anna was her only friend, but Anna had many friends.

When Anna arrives she fondly recollects the supposedly fun times she and Kate apparently shared in their youth twenty years previously. Kate is stunned in to silence. Meanwhile  Deeley regales them with tales about his past life.

Later Deeley confronts Anna, telling her that he’s met her before. All three characters hark back to earlier times with conflicting memories and emotions in this increasingly high-charge and potentially explosive drama. As their compelling story unfolds old and new conflicts open up and the tension rises.

Performance times are:

  • Mondays to Saturdays Evenings 7.30 p.m.
  • Matinees on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 3 p.m.