Collected plays: eight

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Methuen Drama, Dec 1, 2000 - Drama - 277 pages

The eighth volume in the Coward Collection includes I'll Leave It To You and The Young Idea, the first of Coward's plays ever to be produced. These were, as he said, "enthusiastically acclaimed by the critics and ran five weeks and eight weeks respectively. In both of them I appeared with the utmost determination."

This Was a Man, a slightly later play, was written in 1926, after the successes which made his name. It was originally banned by the Lord Chamberlain "for facetious adultery".

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About the author (2000)

Noel Coward was born in 1899 in Teddington, Middlesex. He made his name as a playwright with The Vortex (1924), in which he also appeared. His numerous other successful plays included Fallen Angels (1925), Hay Fever (1925), Private Lives (1933), Design for Living (1933), and Blithe Spirit (1941). During the war he wrote screenplays such as Brief Encounter (1944) and This Happy Breed (1942). In the fifties he started a new career as a cabaret entertainer. He published volumes of verse and a novel, Pomp and Circumstance (1960), two volumes of autobiography, and four volumes of short stories: To Step Aside (1939), Star Quality (1951), Pretty Polly Barlow (1964), and Bon Voyage (l967). Coward was knighted in 1970 and died three years later in Jamaica.

Sheridan Morley is an award-winning theater critic, broadcaster, and biographer. He is the author of several biographies, whose subjects range from No?l Coward and David Niven to his late father, Robert Morley, and his grandmother, Dame Gladys Cooper. He lives in London, England.

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