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7 Dec 6:53am

Vicky Featherstone and Mark Ravenhill on 20 years of bold British theatre

The Guardian
As the director and playwright reunite to stage The Cane at the Royal Court, they talk about their friendship and the passion and pain behind their plays An artistic director has no secrets from the writer who once helped her clamber out of a skip on a boozy night out. It’s not surprising that Vicky Featherstone and Mark Ravenhill have such rapport. Then twentysomething compadres, now they enter their 50s as artistic director of the Royal Court and a leading playwright respectively. They still itch to raze British theatre’s entrenched power structures to the ground. Shared history produces the kind of trust that means Featherstone didn’t hesitate when Ravenhill asked her for a commission, even though all he knew was that he was intrigued by the long-buried history of corporal punishment. His own memories hadn’t been repressed through trauma, but had sunk into the background as an antiquated remnant of a previous age. “It was one of those anomalies I’d forgotten about – every week, somebody was caned,” he marvels. “How weird.” Was he among them? “No, I was a very good liar!”
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