Littlewood, Joan

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Littlewood, Joan


Born 1914 in London. British director and theatrical figure.

Littlewood studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. She and E. MacColl founded Theater Union, an amateur troupe that functioned between 1935 and 1939, and Theater Workshop (1945), a professional troupe that toured the cities of Great Britain and Western Europe.

In 1953 the workshop rented space at the Theater Royal in the London suburb of Stratford; Littlewood continues to work there (with hiatuses). Her outstanding productions have included Behan’s The Quare Fellow (1956) and The Hostage (1958), Shakespeare’s Macbeth (in contemporary dress; performed in Moscow, 1957), Delaney’s A Taste of Honey (1958), Chilton’s Oh What a Lovely War! (1963), Garson’s MacBird! (1967), Ingraham and Wells’ Mrs. Wilson’s Diary (1968), and the musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat (1972) by T. Rice and E. Weber.

Littlewood, an innovative director oriented toward mass audiences, uses sharp satirical generalizations in her productions and struggles against routine commercial theater in Britain.


Soveremennyi angliiskii teatr. Moscow [1963].
Taylor, J. R. Anger and After. London [1963].


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Littlewood, Joan. Joan's book: Joan Littlewood's Peculiar History as She Tells It, London: Methuen, 1974.
(3) Joan Littlewood, Joan's Book: The Autobiography of loan Littlewood (London: Methuen, 2003), 764.
and Basil Fox; middle row, from left: Kenneth Kelly, Albert Pierson, Martin Littlewood, Peter Whalley, Bessie Matthews, Gladys Gibbs, Margaret Shaw, Pat Scott, Myrtle Kelly, Ken Grindrod, Betty Peel, Mollie Bannister, Brennie Chambler and Peter Harvey; front row, from left: Barbara Littlewood, ?, Gerald Avison, Joan Milsom (Burrell), youth club leader Percy Littlewood, Mrs Hothersall, the Rev Geoffrey Hothersall, Carol Littlewood, Joan Rawcliffe, Mavis Quinn/Finney, Verna Taylor and Joan Flynn.

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