Articles by Alan Ayckbourn

This extract about The Champion of Paribanou was written by Alan Ayckbourn for the introduction to Alan Ayckbourn: Plays 2, published in 1998.

Introduction To Plays 3 (extract)

The Champion of Paribanou is my latest children's play. It more or less encapsulates all that I've learnt so far and am still learning about theatre for young people. It involves fantasy and magic, includes a good deal of dark passion, contains a strong narrative and I think (for its type) has quite unusual protagonists.

In Murganah, I have written as tragic a heroine as I've ever achieved: a young girl who befriends a prince but is rejected, takes desperate measures to regain him by literally selling her soul. When she finally loses her lover to another, she seeks a terrible revenge. In this play the definition of good and evil is far less clearly defined.

For the first time in a children's play, I've strayed into the grey area of individual choice. Are any of us ever born good or bad? Or do we only grow that way as a result of the circumstances we face and the choices we make?

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