Season's Greetings (—)

This article was written by Alan Ayckbourn for a programme for a production at the Century Theatre, Keswick.

Season’s Greetings is my second play to be concerned with Christmas and with what might be termed its more grisly side. The first was Absurd Person Singular which dealt, I hope fairly humorously, with three of the most awful festivities imaginable. Why then return to the scene of the crime, as it were?
I think in part because, this time, I wanted to paint the rosier side of the picture. To write instead about log fires, Christmas trees, excited children’s faces, candle-light, the holly and the mistletoe. The Bunkers’ home has all these. It’s comfy and cosy and it swarms with children. Not the smaller, shorter variety though who remain unseen, usually lurking just out of sight in muddy gum boots.
But the taller older ones are on view. Those currently going through the ‘awkward’ age, the twenty-five to seventy year olds. They’re all there. Fighting over their toys, clamouring for attention, bullying, sneaking and crying, then kissing and making up and generally getting far too overexcited, as they always do every year at Christmas.
Season’s Greetings is a play about love and about, as Rachel puts it, how unfair it all is. And success and failure. And jealousy and self-deception. And greed and envy and lust and gluttony. Just an average family Christmas. And looming over the proceedings in true pantomime spirit the shadows of two eccentric uncles, the good angel and the bad one…

Copyright: Alan Ayckbourn. Please do not reproduce without the permission of the copyright holder.