Delving into Delfont-Mackintosh’s extensive theatre archives unearths some treasures for our new documentary

2016-08-30-15-22-17We’ve been delving into the Delfont-Mackintosh archives to find material for inclusion in our new documentary, STAGE DIRECTION, featuring Anthony Quayle and Roy Kinnear. Delfont-Mackintosh operate eight West End theatres and their chief archivist, Rosy Runciman, has opened our eyes to an Aladdin’s cave of rare and intriguing material.

We’ve recently spent a great deal of time thumbing through early production programmes, such as John Gielgud’s highly acclaimed Richard II from 1937 and the acclaimed Crime and Punishment, directed by Anthony Quayle in 1959.

noel-coward-john-perry-anthony-quayleThen there were the extensive range of rare and seldom seen photographs, including Noel Coward visiting Gibraltar during the Second World War and  meeting with John Perry and Anthony Quayle, as well as early photographs of the original auditorium and foyer of the highly ornate New Theatre, which later became the Albery and was renamed the Noel Coward Theatre in October 2005 following an extensive renovation. In addition, we’ve been given unique access to film in and around the historic theatre, gaining wonderful shots and insights from the auditorium, the noted Noel’s Bar with a wealth of Coward memorabilia, from the wings and the stage itself.


STAGE DIRECTION is a documentary based around two radio interviews that were recorded with Anthony Quayle and Roy Kinnear back in 1984, when they were appearing the The Clandestine Marriage at the Albery Theatre.

Part of the search through the archives produced a copy of the show’s original programme and other material from Anthony’s and Roy’s many West End appearances.

During the radio interviews Anthony and Roy reminisce about their early acting days, the difficulties they experienced trying to get established and took the time to pass on their advice to those new young performers who were coming up behind them. STAGE DIRECTION revisits the theatre where the interviews were originally recorded and asks what relevance their advice still has for actors in the ever-changing and expanding digital world today.