Sheep magazine Archive 2: issues 10-17

AlfRodchenko

Lefty online magazine: issue 10, May 2016 to issue 17, November 2016

Artwork: Alan Rutherford

DEAD SHEEP

Jonathan Maitland’s play about

Tory treachery and Maggie the temptress: how 80s politics

inspired a script for Brexit Britain

My play Dead Sheep, about Margaret Thatcher and Geoffrey Howe,

already included a prime minister’s downfall, a machinating wife and an

ambitious blond maverick. Reworking it since the referendum has been a

writer’s dream

When I asked the BBC’s former chief political correspondent John

Sergeant for advice about my play Dead Sheep in 2014 he told me

colourfully but gently that I was wasting my time. John, a former

colleague, had a point. Who’d be interested in a play about Geoffrey

Howe and Margaret Thatcher, especially as Thatcher’s story had already

been explored in dramas like The Iron Lady, The Long Walk to Finchley

and The Audience?

But I felt those productions had missed a trick, for understandable

dramatic reasons, in treating Howe as a jealous, pompous, bitpart

player. I had always thought there was much more to him. His

relationship with Thatcher was also the most effective way, I believed,

to examine the flaws and qualities of the woman who moulded modern

Britain.

59

SEPTEMBER 2016

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