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Alan Ayckbourn Encyclopedia: P

A Pageant (Intimate Exchanges): One of the eight major permutations of Intimate Exchanges in which Sylvie and Celia end up fighting over who plays Boadicea at a pageant and Toby is forced to choose which one he loves. It has two possible permutations for the final scene comprising A Harvest Festival and A Wedding.

Pageant play: An unwritten concept for a duology of plays planned for 2004 which would have taken place at both Scarborough Castle and the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough.

The Party Game: An unproduced and unpublished play written by Alan Ayckbourn prior to his first professional commission in 1959 and probably dating back to 1958. Intended for performance by amateur drama groups, it is a one-act character piece set at a cocktail party. It received its only public airing in a read-through at the Ayckbourn 2010 event on 10 October 2011 at Scarborough Library and is now considered one of Alan Ayckbourn's Grey Plays (produced but unpublished). The Party Game has not been published and is not available for production.

Past Tense: An unused concept for a play which bears slight plot similarities to the one act play The Agent found in Roundelay.

Pattison, John: Composer and collaborator with Alan Ayckbourn. John Pattison's first collaboration with the playwright was on the musical Dreams From A Summer House. He also composed the music for The Musical Jigsaw Play and A Word For Our Sponsor as well as composing the incidental music for many of Alan Ayckbourn's productions since the premiere of Body Language in 1990.

Peggy: See Margaret Ramsay.

Pendon: Alan Ayckbourn's fictional town where many of his plays are set. It was first introduced in Relatively Speaking and has played a prominent part in as plays as diverse as Ten Times Table, Sisterly Feelings, Way Upstream, A Chorus Of Disapproval and Improbable Fiction. The town is nominally situated in the commuter belt in the vicinity of Reading, but is prone to move around the UK depending on the playwright's whims.

Pen To Paper: In 1981, Alan Ayckbourn and the composer Paul Todd contributed two songs to the anthology programme of new writing. The programme was themed to travel and one of the songs - both now lost - concerned train travel. Pen To Paper was broadcast on 22 February 1981 on BBC Radio 4.

Peter Rabbit: See Where's Peter Rabbit?

Pinter, Harold: Nobel-prize winning British playwright and contemporary of Alan Ayckbourn. Ayckbourn has frequently said he was influenced by Pinter and was also directed by the writer in Pinter's self-directed second production of The Birthday Party in 1959 in which Ayckbourn played Stanley.

'Pirandello' play: Alan Ayckbourn has frequently noted he had written a number of plays before being commissioned to write his first play, The Square Cat. One of these plays was in the style of Pirandello, apparently inspired by Six Characters In Search Of An Author. No copy of the play survives.

Play For Today: In 1974, Alan Ayckbourn agreed to write a 75 minute play for the popular BBC series Play For Today, to be directed by Herbert Wise. Unfortunately the playwright's commitments meant he was not able to write the piece.

Plays: As of 2017, Alan Ayckbourn has written 81 full-length plays (the 81st - A Brief History of Women - will premiere at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, during summer 2017); 11 revues; four one-act plays; five adaptations; seven plays for children / young people and one screenplay since 1955. These are just acknowledged plays and do not include the Grey Plays or unproduced / unacknowledged plays.

Plays And Players: One of several unused titles considered for Time And Time Again.

Plays For Children: Alan Ayckbourn is well known as a writer of family plays (sometimes wrongly labelled as children's plays), but has also written a number of play specifically for theatre-goers under the age of 8 years old. These include: The Princess And The Mouse; The Ten Magic Bridges; Miranda's Magic Mirror; The Girl Who Lost Her Voice.

Plays 1 (collection):  A collection of Alan Ayckbourn's plays published by Faber. This collects A Chorus Of Disapproval, A Small Family Business, Henceforward... and Man Of The Moment.

Plays 2 (collection): A collection of Alan Ayckbourn's family plays published by Faber. This collects Ernie's Incredible Illucinations, Invisible Friends, This Is Where We Came In, My Very Own Story and The Champion Of Paribanou. It is frequently incorrectly advertised as containing Mr A's Amazing Maze Plays, but this play is not included in the collection.

Plays 3 (collection): A collection of Alan Ayckbourn's play published by Faber. This collects Haunting Julia, Sugar Daddies, Drowning on Dry Land and Private Fears In Public Places.

Plays 4 (collection): A collection of Alan Ayckbourn's play published by Faber. This collects The Revengers' Comedies, Things We Do For Love and House & Garden.

Plays 5 (collection): A collection of Alan Ayckbourn's play published by Faber. This collects Snake In The Grass, If I Were You, Life & Beth, My Wonderful Day and Life Of Riley.

A Pocket Guide To Alan Ayckbourn's Plays: A guide, written by Alan Ayckbourn's biographer Paul Allen and published by Faber, to Alan Ayckbourn's plays written between 1959 and 2003.

The Politician: 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.

Polka Theatre: London based children's theatre company which produced the London premiere of Alan Ayckbourn's Mr A's Amazing Maze Plays on 30 September 1989.

Popularity: Alan Ayckbourn is one of the most performed living playwrights in the world. He is not, as is frequently inaccurately reported, the second most performed playwright after Shakespeare; this quote originated in an Arts Council report from the early '90s, which showed the number of productions of Ayckbourn plays and audience figures were second only to Shakespeare's plays in that given year in British subsidised regional theatres.

Beatrix Potter: See Where's Peter Rabbit?

Premonitions: The first act of Alan Ayckbourn's 80th play, Consuming Passions, which premiered on 12 August 2016 at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough. Although a single play, it was written so the two acts could be performed separately (although they do need to be both seen and in the correct order for the play to make sense).

The Princess And The Mouse: A play for young people premiered at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, from 11 December 2002. It is inspired by the fairy tale The Princess And The Pea.

Private Fears In Public Places: Alan Ayckbourn's 67th play premiered at the Stephen Joseph Theatre In The Round, Scarborough, on 17 August 2004, and opened at the Orange Tree, London, on 25 May 2005 as part of a tour which saw it open to enormous critical acclaim at the Brits Off Broadway Festival at the 59E59 Theaters in New York. The play traces the lives and relationships of six loosely linked people in London.

Private Fears In Public Places (concept): Private Fears In Public Fears was first advertised as Alan Ayckbourn's 46th play in 1994. Unfortunately Alan Ayckbourn found he couldn't write the play, which was set in an airport, and abandoned it. He wrote Communicating Doors instead and kept the earlier play title for future use. The concept for the 1994 Private Fears In Public Places bears no relation to the actual 2004 play.

Private Fears In Public Places (film): The film adaptation of Private Fears In Public Places (original title: Coeurs) was directed by Alain Resnais and released in 2006. The action was transposed to a snow-covered Paris and the shoot entirely studio-bound. It is possibly the most faithful and accomplished of all the filmed adaptations of Alan Ayckbourn's plays and won Alain Resnais a prestigious Silver Lion award at the Venice Film Festival.

Production Syndicate: A fund-raising initiative launched by the Stephen Joseph Theatre in 2013 designed specifically to help finance the world premiere production of Arrivals & Departures. Participants were offered a variety of behind-the-scenes opportunities with Alan Ayckbourn.

Professor: Alan Ayckbourn has received a number of honorary degrees and doctorates during his career, these include: University of Hull (Hon. D. Litt.); Bretton Hall (Hon. Fellow); University of Keele (Hon. D. Litt.); University of Leeds (Hon. D. Litt); University of York (Doctor of the University); University of Bradford (Hon. D. Litt.); University of Cardiff (Hon. Fellow); Open University (Doctor of the University); University of Manchester (Hon. D.Litt); Honorary Professor of The University of Hull; Doctor of Letters of the York St John University.

The P.T. Tapes: Two audio cassettes released in 1988 containing incidental music for Alan Ayckbourn's plays, composed by Paul Todd. These recordings are now unavailable.

Putting It On: The autobiography of the West End producer Michael Codron (written in association with Alan Strachan). Originally published in 2010, it includes an extensive chapter on Codron's relationship with Alan Ayckbourn and his role in producing the majority of the West End productions of Alan's plays between 1972 and 2002.

Copyright: Simon Murgatroyd