Monday, September 01, 2008

Why Caryl Churchill is the Top Girl

In The Times, Lucy Powell celebrates the career of playwright Caryl Churchill.
It's her uncanny ability to pull you up, flip you over, rewire your cosy assumptions that makes Churchill such an irreducible writer. On Wednesday she turns 70. And, to mark that birthday, this month the Royal Court will stage readings of her plays. They demonstrate a mastery of her medium. From her first full-length effort, Owners, in 1972, and in the 23 that followed, she has played dazzling games with form: centuries, genders and races collide on her increasingly surreal stage. Her works betray an unrelenting political inquiry, into feminism (Top Girls, 1982), capitalism (Serious Money, 1987), colonialism (Cloud Nine, 1979) or cloning (A Number, 2002).

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