Upon its premiere at the National Theatre, Betrayal was immediately recognized as a masterpiece. It won the Olivier Award for best new play, and has since been performed all around the world and made into an Academy Award-nominated film starring Jeremy Irons, Ben Kingsley, and Patricia Hodge. Betrayal begins with a meeting between adulterous lovers, Emma and Jerry, two years after their affair has ended. During the nine scenes of the play, we move back in time through the stages of their affair, ending in the house of Emma and her husband Robert, Jerry’s best friend.
“[Betrayal] deals with the shifting balance of power in triangular relationships, and with the pain of loss. . . . Pinter probes the corrosive nature of betrayal . . . a world where pain and loss are explored with poetic precision.” —Guardian
“Betrayal is an exquisite play, brilliantly simple in form and courageous in its search for a poetry that turns banality into a melancholy beauty.” —Newsweek
“There is hardly a line into which desire, pain, alarm, sorrow, rage or some kind of blend of feelings has not been compressed, like volatile gas in a cylinder less stable than it looks . . . The play's subject is not sex, not even adultery, but the politics of betrayal and the damage it inflicts on all involved.” —Times (UK)
Trouble in the Works
The Black and White
Last to Go
“Writing for Myself”
In The Room, Harold Pinter's first play, he reveals himself as already in full control of his unique ability to make dramatic poetry of the banalities of everyday speech and the precision with which it defines character.
Harold Pinter's latest play, Celebration, and his first play, The Room directed by the author himself, premired as a double-bill at London's Almeida Theatre in March 2000.
Set against the decayed elegance of a house in London’s Hampstead Heath, in No Man’s Land two men face each other over a drink. Do they know each other, or is each performing an elaborate character of recognition? Their ambiguity—and the comedy—intensify with the arrival of two younger men, the one ostensibly a manservant, the other a male secretary. All four inhabit a no man’s land between time present and time remembered, between reality and imagination—a territory which Pinter explores with his characteristic mixture of biting wit, aggression, and anarchic sexuality.
“Brilliant, cranky, and eccentric, and the narrative passages are some of the most thrilling ever written.” —Library Journal
“Some of the author’s most enduring themes—notably, sexual jealousy and betrayal—are present. . . . The narration shows traces of writers as various as Joyce and Beckett, e.e. cummings and J.P. Donleavy.” —The Washington Post
“The Abbott and Costello meet Samuel Beckett dialogue . . . makes you laugh out loud.” —The Village Voice
The Birthday Party
The Dumb Waiter
A Slight Ache
A Night Out
"The Black and White"
"Writing for the Theatre"
No Man's Land