Ayckbourn Influences: Stephen Joseph

Stacks Image 16

Stephen Joseph
(© Scarborough Theatre Trust)

Stephen Joseph is, inarguably, the single most influential and important figure in the life of Alan Ayckbourn. Without Stephen Joseph's guidance, advice and encouragement, it is highly unlikely that Alan would have developed as a playwright or director - at least not to the extent he has achieved today. Stephen commissioned Alan's first professional play and employed him professionally as a director for the first time.

Stephen Joseph's impact on Alan can be singularly seen though in Alan's decision to take over the Library Theatre following Stephen Joseph's death. This decision ensured Stephen's legacy survived in the theatre that Alan Ayckbourn is inextricably associated with, the Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough.

Stephen Joseph, himself, was a Birtish theatre pioneer during the 1950s and 1960s who, amongst many other achievements, was the founder of the Library Theatre in Scarborough in 1955, the UK's first professional theatre-in-the-round company.

This section of the playwright - compiled and researched by the SJT's Archivist Simon Murgatroyd and Dr Paul Elsam - explores the life and legacy of this key figure in British theatre history in the 20th century and his impact on
Alan Ayckbourn.

Who was Stephen Joseph?

Stephen Joseph Achievements, Life & Publications

All research for this section is by Simon Murgatroyd and / or Dr Paul Elsam. Please do not reproduce without crediting the authors and the website. All articles are copyright of the original author unless specified.