John Mcgrath

(1 June 1935 – 22 January 2002 / Scotland)

John Mcgrath
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John Peter McGrath was a Liverpudlian-Irish playwright and theatre theorist who grew up in Wales and notably took up the cause of Scottish independence in his plays. His life partner was the Scottish actress Elizabeth MacLennan.

He was known both for his work with the 7:84 Theatre Company as a playwright and for his theoretical formulation of the principles of a radical, popular theatre. His best-known play is The Cheviot, the Stag, and the Black Black Oil (1973). The play utilizes some of the dramaturgical and theatrical techniques of epic theatre - actors take on multiple roles and frequently slip out of character, for example - in ways that many students of theatre would ... more »

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Best Poem of John Mcgrath


And when our streets are green again
When metalled roads are green
And girls walk barefoot through the weeds
Of Regent Street, Saint Martin's Lane

And children hide in factories
Where burdock blooms and vetch and rust,
And elms and oaks and chestnut trees
Are tall again and hope is lost

When up the Strand the foxes glide
And hedgehogs sniff and wildcats yell
And golden orioles come back
To flash through Barnes and Clerkenwell

When governments and industries
Lie choked by weeds in fertile rain
For sure the few who stay alive
Will laugh ...

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