David Rudkin

James David Rudkin (born 29 June 1936, London) is an English playwright of Northern Irish descent. Coming from a family of strict evangelical Christians, Rudkin was educated at King Edward's School, Birmingham and read Mods and Greats at St Catherine's College, Oxford. Beginning to write during national service in the Royal Corps of Signals, Rudkin taught Latin, Greek and music at a county high school in Worcestershire until 1964, while also directing amateur theatre productions.

Following the success of his first play Afore Night Come (1962), Rudkin translated works by Aeschylus, Roger Vitrac, the libretto of Schoenberg's Moses and Aaron, and wrote the book to the Western Theatre Ballet's Sun into Darkness (Sadlers Wells 1963) and the libretto for Gordon Crosse's comic opera, The Grace of Todd.

Rudkin's major works for the stage include Ashes (1974), The Sons of Light (written in 1965 though not staged until 1975), The Triumph of Death (1981) and The Saxon Shore (1986). His associations with the RSC also led him to translate the Hippolytus of Euripides for the company in 1978, having translated the author's Hecuba for radio three years previously.

He has written for television, including The Stone Dance (1963), Children Playing (1967), House of Character (1968) (staged by the Birmingham Rep as No Title in 1974), Blodwen, Home from Rachel's Marriage (1969), Bypass (1972), Atrocity (1973), the Alan Clarke-directed Penda's Fen (1974), and Artemis 81 (1981); for radio, including No Accounting for Taste (1960), Gear Change (1967), Cries from Casement as His Bones are Brought to Dublin (1973) (also staged by the RSC); and for cinema, including Fran├žois Truffaut's Fahrenheit 451 (1966).

He has also written a volume in the British Film Institute's "Film Classics" series, a 2005 study of Carl Theodor Dreyer's Vampyr.

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    As they say in geology, time never fails, there is always enough of it, so I may say, criticism never fails.
    —Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862)