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National Service

During the ten years from 1987 to 1997 that he was Director of the Royal National Theatre, Richard Eyre kept a diary - a record that disarmingly captured a life at the heart of British cultural and political affairs. The powerful and the famous inevitably strut and fret upon its pages, but National Service is also a moving personal journey, charted faithfully by a fiercely self-aware and frequently self-doubting individual. The job of grappling with a giant three-headed monster as complex as the Royal National Theatre is laid before us. So are good gossip, brilliant insights into personalities and relationships and a sense of the ridiculous, which Eyre is powerless to suppress. Like other consummate diarists such as Alan Clark and Kenneth Tynan, Richard Eyre has a voice and point of view that jolt the reader into fresh understanding - and are instantly compelling.
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Promotional Information

Winner of the Theatre Book Award 2003 Promoted by Waterstones in a summer 3 for 2 For all fans of the diaries of Kenneth Tynan and Alan Clark

About the Author

Sir Richard Eyre was the Artistic Director of the Royal National Theatre for ten years. He has directed numerous classic and new plays and films most recently Iris and is the author of Utopia and Other Places, and co-author of Changing Stages and of Iris: A Screenplay.


'A matchless chronicle of arguably the finest decade in the National's history ... nothing could testify to its continuing vitality than this with more vigour and eloquence than this rich, enthralling book' Sunday Times 'A superlative record of a theatre, a man and a time' Simon Callow, Guardian 'Insistent, persuasive, disarming and catching' Daily Telegraph 'If there was an equivalent to the Archbishop of Canterbury in the theatre, it would surely be the director of the National ... Eyre's book is a compulsive and rewarding read ... He can be pithy; he can be painterly and, occasionally, surprisingly tender ... Would the memoirs of George Carey matter to us as much? I doubt it' New Statesman

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