Night and Day

Definition

Theater

  • A play by Tom Stoppard, first performed in 1978 atthe Phoenix Theatre, London, with Diana Rigg and Peter Machin in theleads. Rigg was named best actress of the year by Plays and Playersfor her performance, with Jack Kroll noting in Newsweek: "Beauty,wit, bitchery and vulnerability seem to whirl about her like a prideof playfully savage ocelots." Before the play moved to Broadway,however, Rigg developed back trouble and was replaced by Maggie Smith.

    The play explores the concept of press freedom. A group ofjournalists are covering an African rebellion from the house of theWhite mining engineer Carson and his wife, Ruth. The Sunday Globe'sreporter, Wagner, and his photographer, Guthrie, are at odds with a freelancer,Milne, whose exclusive interview with the rebel leader Shimbu hasoutclassed their best efforts. Professional jealousies are exacerbatedby the fact that Ruth, who once spent a night with Wagner in London,now fancies Milne. Guthrie and the freelancer travel to the rebelcamp on a mission to bring Shimbu to meet President Mageeba, but Guthriesoon returns to announce that Milne has been killed.

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