Next Best Thing productions

She's All Yours
About Feydeau

David Reid, Zoe English and Al Connell in Feydeau's She's All Yours

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GEORGES FEYDEAU (1862-1921) became fascinated by theatre at boarding school, where he was sent after the death of his father. He secured the position of secretary at the Theatre de la Renaissance aged 21 and within five years was a successful playwright. He went onto write over 20 plays, but his public success was offset by private misery. He spent each afternoon writing or directing, each evening at the show and then at Maxim’s (where he had a table permanently reserved); he returned home at three or four the next morning, and began again at noon the next day. His wife shared none of his interests and asked him to leave in 1909, when he moved to the Hotel Terminus. Feydeau gambled on the stock exchange and lost not only the fortune his plays earned, but his precious collection of Impressionist art (sold to pay debts whilst he was writing La Main Passe). He contracted syphilis, was divorced in 1914, stopped writing in 1916 and was committed to an asylum in 1919 when he announced he was the Emperor Napoleon III. Feydeau’s private anguish occasionally surfaces in his plays. A bitter or tragic note may darken the hilarity, and collapsing marriages and lonely bachelors are recurring themes. But it hardly impinged on his dazzling public success. He was the most successful dramatist of his generation in France, and regularly had two, three or even four plays running at the same time in Paris. He was an actor and a director whose stage business exactly matched the demonic ingenuity of his plotting and dialogue, his scripts were littered with precise stage directions, and today he stands alongside Molière as one of the giants of French comedy. His other plays include Monsieur chasse! (1892), L’Hotel du libre echange (1894), Le Dindon (1896), La Dame de chez Maxim (1899) and Occupe-toi d’Amelie (1908).

 

She's All Yours:
About the play        Directing She's All Yours.

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