Alan Ayckbourn's Curtain Call

Scarborough Theatre Trust / The Bob Watson Archive

WAY UPSTREAM: The stage was filled with water for Ayckbourn's ambitious 1981 play

The proprietor of the little Scarborough hotel where I was staying — a maternal Scottish woman who apologized sweetly for the lack of Internet service — stopped by my breakfast table to ask what I thought of the play I'd seen the previous night. "It's one of Alan's, isn't it?" she said. Then, after hearing my favorable review, she added a bit wistfully: "I don't know what we'll do when he retires completely. It won't be the same without him."

In Scarborough, everyone knows who Alan is. Playwright Alan Ayckbourn was an 18-year-old actor when he first came...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!