Great War Theatre

9 May 2018: ‘Peace and the Theatre’: The British Stage after the Great War” at Revival after the war: Repair, Rebuild, Remember (Leuven)

In May Helen Brooks has been invited to present on post-war British theatre as part of this international colloquium in Belgium. The paper takes as a starting point the hopes, immediately following the armistice, that theatre will turn away from the war. It will reflect on the ways in which British theatre developed in the years immediately following the war and consider the extent to which the post-war stage broke away from, or continued wartime theatre practices and how the post-war stage dealt with the recent conflict. Maggie Gale has recently argued that one of the ‘notable gaps in the theatrical imagination of the years immediately following World War One was the inability or unwillingness of theatre managers to produce work that dealt directly with the experiences of war’ (Gale, 2015, 144). Reflecting on this statement the paper will examine ways in which the post-war stage tackled the war and its ongoing impact. To find out more about the colloquium, click here.

15 Feb 2018: ‘Theatre during the Great War’  (Western Front Association, East London Branch)

On Thursday 15 February 2018, Helen Brooks presented at the East London Western Front Association meeting about Theatre in the Great War and researching First War plays. The evening included a rehearsed reading by members of the branch of J. M. Barrie’s play The Old Lady Shows Her Medals.
The Old Lady Shows Her Medals was first performed in 1917 and published in Echoes of the War in 1918. James Matthew Barrie, 1860-1937, was famous for writing Peter Pan or The Boy Who Would Never Grow Up in 1904, The Admirable Crichton in 1914 and Dear Brutus in 1917, as well as other war plays. For more information visit or follow @WFAEastLondon.