Celebrations of Harold Pinter
Audiences will have two opportunities in coming weeks to explore the work of the late British playwright Harold Pinter (1930-2008), who received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2005, among other honors over a long career. Pinter’s plays, while internationally acclaimed, have rarely been mounted in Sacramento during the past 20 years.
On Saturday, March 14, at 8 p.m. and Sunday, March 15, at 2 p.m., British actor Julian Sands will present a one-man show titled A Celebration of Harold Pinter at the Mondavi Center at UC Davis (9399 Old Davis Road). Sands is best known for film work including roles in The Killing Fields, A Room With A View, Ocean’s 13 and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Tickets for Sands’ performances cost $52, and can be purchased at www.mondaviarts.org or (866) 754-2787.
In 2005, Sands was asked by Pinter to prepare a selection of Pinter’s poems for a special presentation in London. Pinter and Sands spent many hours together, with Pinter describing how his words should be delivered—when to pause, when to speak with a nuanced tone and so on. Based on this intense communication between writer and performer (and the friendship that developed), Sands and director John Malkovich developed a solo show that Sands performed at the Edinburgh Festival, and later toured to New York (where Sands was nominated for the 2013 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Solo Performance), Chicago, San Francisco, Paris and elsewhere.
Among those attending Sands’ shows at Mondavi will be local actress and director Janis Stevens (herself a nominee for the 2006 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Solo Performance, for her role in Vivien). Stevens will direct the upcoming Capital Stage production of Pinter’s play The Homecoming, which won the Tony Award for Best Play in 1967. The Capital Stage (www.capstage.org) production will run April 29 through May 31.