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April de Angelis

Culture Now: April de Angelis in Conversation with Stephen Jeffreys

8 Feb 2013

Join us for a lunchtime talk with British dramatist April de Angelis, in conversation with playwright and screenwriter Stephen Jeffreys.

Having originally trained as an actress at East 15 Acting School after reading English at Sussex, April de Angelis began her career in the 1980s with the Monstrous Regiment Theatre Company. However, her notable ability as a playwright became substantiated as her play Breathless won the 1987 Second Wave Young Women’s Writing Festival.

Often exploring British historical themes in her plays, Playhouse Creatures (1993) and A Laughing Matter (2002) are set in the London theatrical milieu of the 17th and 18th centuries respectively. Wanderlust (1988) examines Victorian colonialism and Ironmistress (1989) is a verse play exploring Lady Charlotte Guest's factory ownership. A Warwickshire Testimony (RSC 2000) explores life between the wars in a Warwickshire village. The Positive hour was produced and commissioned by Max Stafford Clark and Out of Joint Theatre Company in 1997. De Angelis also contributed to the opera about the case of June and Jennifer Gibbons, The Silent Twins (2007), as a librettist to music composed by Errollyn Wallen and Flight (Glyndebourne 1998) with Composer Jonathan Dove.

Adaptations for theatre include The Life and Times Of Fanny Hill (1990) Red Shift, Soft Vengeance (1993) Graeae Theatre, Wuthering Heights (2008) Birmingham Rep. Her Work at the Royal Court includes Hush (1992) Havana (2003), Wild East (2006) and Jumpy (2011) which then transferred to the Duke of York’s Theatre in 2012.

Stephen Jeffreys was Literary Associate of the Royal Court for over a decade, and his work includes The Libertine and I Just Stopped by to See the Man (Royal Court), Valued Friends and A Going Concern (Hampstead Theatre). The Libertine was made into a film starring Johnny Depp for which Jeffreys wrote the screenplay. His next work is Caught in Flight, a film about Princess Diana starring Naomi Watts which will be released later this year.

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