The Antoine theatre and director Claude Régy have dedicated a night of debate to Harold Pinter, after a performance of his play The Birthday Party. Claude Régy reads a letter addressed to Pinter by a female spectator and Pinter's humourous response.
Harold Pinter, writer, playwright and director was born in 1930 to a Jewish family in London. Deeply affected by the Second World War, he refused military service and took up studies of dramatic art in London. At the beginning of the 1950s he went on stage under the name of David Baron. He soon turned to writing as a poet and novelist and made a name for himself as an author of radio pieces.
But it was in theatre that his success arrived, first withThe Caretaker(1960), thenThe Collection, The Lover, Tea partyandThe Homecoming(1965). He became a figure of "absurd theatre", where characters existing on a stage devoid of meaning, struggle against the threat of the outside world. His singular style shifts between humour and tragedy. From 1962, he wrote film scripts, notably in collaboration with the director Joseph Losey (The Go-Between, 1969).
Politically engaged, he sympathises with the British leftist party Respect and is an ardent defender of human rights. In 1988 his pieceMountain Languagedenounced Turkish domination of the Kurd people. In 2005, Harold Pinter received the Nobel Prize for Literature. He now devotes himself to politics.