Ronald Harwood

(b. 1934)

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(1934– ),

South African playwright, screenwriter, and novelist, who came to London as an actor in 1953. His best‐known play, The Dresser (1983), is a partly autobiographical account of the months he spent on tour with actor Sir Donald Wolfit, of whom he also published a biography in 1971. Since then, several of Harwood's works have had a South African theme. He has also worked on the musical adaptation of J. B. Priestley's Good Companions, E. Waugh's The Ordeal of Gilbert Pinfold, and Chekhov's Ivanov. His theatre life has often been linked to the careers of actors Albert Finney and Tom Courtenay, and he has been an active campaigner for civil rights. His fiction includes The Girl in Melanie Klein (1969) and the movie satire One Interior Day (1978). His play Mahler's Conversion (2001) concerns the composer's conversion to Catholicism in 1897. Among his screenplays are The Browning Version (1994) and Oliver Twist (2005). Harwood was one of the founding playwrights of the Royal Exchange, Manchester, where three of his plays were premiered.

Subjects: Literature.

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