Alan Ayckbourn Encyclopaedia: N

National Service: Alan Ayckbourn joined the Royal Air Force as part of the National Service programme in 1959, serving several days before he was certified unfit for duty by a Doctor due to an existing knee injury.

National Theatre: Alan Ayckbourn has had a connection with the National Theatre since the mid 1970s, particularly in association with Sir Peter Hall. Between 1986 and 1988, Alan was a company director at the National Theatre, directing acclaimed productions of Arthur Miller's A View From The Bridge and the world premiere of his own A Small Family Business; he also directed Tons Of Money and 'Tis Pity She's A Whore. He has also directed the London premiere of a number of his plays at the venue, these include: Bedroom Farce (1977); Sisterly Feelings (1980); Way Upstream (1982); A Chorus Of Disapproval (1985); A Small Family Business (1987); Invisible Friends (1991); Mr A's Amazing Maze Plays (1993); House & Garden (1999). The venue has also produced revivals of Season's Greetings (2010) and A Small Family Business (2014).

Neighbourhood Watch: Alan Ayckbourn's 75th play premiered at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, on 13 September 2011, and opened at the Tricycle Theatre, London, on 11 April 2012. An innocent mistake on an estate leads to an alarming escalation of events as the residents of Bluebell Hill Development takes extreme measures to protect themselves.

New Landmarks In Ayckbourn Country: Albert-Reiner Glaap's follow-up to his book A Guided Tour Through Ayckbourn Country , published by Wissenschaftlicher Verlag Trier. This explores Alan Ayckbourn's plays between 2004 and 2012, largely through interviews with the playwright.

New Vic Theatre: See Victoria Theatre.

No Knowing: A short play consisting of two parts - Knowing Her & Knowing Him - which premiered at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, on 6 December 2016. A couple, on their 40th wedding anniversary, and their children relive two possible marriage-changing events.

The Norman Conquests: Alan Ayckbourn's 13th - 15th plays premiered at the Library Theatre, Scarborough, on 18 June 1973, and opened at The Greenwich Theatre, London, on 9 May 1974 before transferring to the Globe Theatre. The award-winning trilogy consists of Table Manners, Living Together and Round And Round The Garden. The three plays depict the events of a single weekend from the perspective of three locations (dining room, living room and garden) as assistant librarian Norman tries to bring happiness to the lives of the three women present at the house with varying results.

The Norman Conquests (audio drama): The play was adapted for an audio-book by the US based company LA Theatre Works and released commercially in 1999.

The Norman Conquests (collection): The Norman Conquests was the first of Alan Ayckbourn's plays to be published in a mass market edition when Chatto & Windus published a hardback collection of the three plays in 1975. Since then, collected editions of the play have also been published by Samuel French, Penguin Books and Grove Press.

The Norman Conquests (radio): The play was adapted for radio by the BBC and first broadcast on 30 August 1980 on BBC Radio 4 over three weeks. It was directed by Gordon House and featured Robin Herford as Norman with Diana Bull as Annie. The adaptation was released on audio cassette by the BBC in 1993 and on CD and as a digital download in 2010.

The Norman Conquests (radio): The play was adapted for radio for a second time by the BBC in 2015 and broadcast from 14 March 2015 over three weeks on BBC Radio 4. It was directed by Peter Kavanagh.

The Norman Conquests (television): The play was adapted for television by Granada Television and first broadcast on 5 October 1977 over three weeks on ITV. The production was directed by Herbert Wise and featured Tom Conti, Richard Briers, Penelope Keith, Fiona Walker, David Troughton and Penelope Wilton. The television adaptation has been released on video and DVD and on certain streaming platforms.

The Norman Conquests (television spin-off): The success of The Norman Conquests on the West End and Broadway stage - and later on television - led to interest from several companies in developing a spin-off television series from the plays, none of which came to fruition.

The Novelist: One of the five inter-linked one-act plays which comprise Alan Ayckbourn's 78th play Roundelay; the order of the plays determined randomly prior to each performance.

Now Being Served: The original proposed title of Alan Ayckbourn's only produced screenplay Service Not Included. The title was altered during the production process.

Nunn, Trevor: Former Artistic Director of the National Theatre, London, from 1997 to 2002. Only two Ayckbourn plays were staged during his tenure as Artistic Director with a staging of the ambitious House & Garden duology, which took place simultaneously in the Olivier and Lyttelton auditoria as well as spilling out into the foyer in the shape of a garden fête. In 2012, he directed the West End revival of A Chorus Of Disapproval at the Harold Pinter Theatre.

Original research for the The Alan Ayckbourn Encyclopaedia section is by Simon Murgatroyd and copyright of the author.