A New Time Demands A New Kind Of Plays

Last week critic Michael Billington compained that the new generation of 90-minute plays was creatively challenged. Ian Rickson begs to disagree: “New cultural and political eras demand new forms. There is a scepticism towards big ideas among the young – but that does not mean they are not engaged with or disturbed by contemporary society. We live in a time when there is a disappointment with unifying ideology and a greater consciousness of contradiction. The old forms in which the writer diagnoses and hypothesises no longer speak to today’s playwrights. In dramatising a more complex, atomised culture, playwrights may seek vivid, suggestive fragments as a better form.”