David Hare

David Hare is a playwright and screenwriter.

Why do people resent the theatre?

By chance, I was living in New York when John McPhee published his New Yorker essay ‘Brigade de Cuisine’. It was 19 February 1979. It caused quite a stir. McPhee described in lip-smacking detail a restaurant which was situated somewhere upstate. He inflamed the reader’s imagination by detailing how delicious the food was without revealing

Just how much lower can the Conservatives sink?

This is the year in which Michael Gambon died, so by definition a grim one for theatre. Of all the tributes, one of the most acute was by Tom Hollander, who recalled how expressive Gambon’s voice was after 30 years on stage. He could reach hundreds of people while seeming to address only one or

Musicals are killing theatre

This has been an agonising time for those of us who love Julian Sands. On 13 January, he went for a one-day hike up Mount Baldy, 50 miles from Los Angeles, and hasn’t been seen since. No one who knows Julian can believe he’s dead. He’s the very epitome of the free-spirited actor. You never

Why shouldn’t we worship the NHS?

For obvious reasons, stocks in ex-editors of The Spectator are experiencing an all-time low. But my own complaint is with Nigel Lawson. Lawson may say it’s hardly his fault that his remark ‘The NHS is the closest thing the English people have to a religion’ has been appropriated ever since by anyone who thinks it’s

David Hare’s diary: Actresses are smarter than journalists

So mysterious, the Conservative party. In every poll, our five most admired institutions are the NHS, the BBC, the Royal Mail, the armed forces and the monarchy. The Conservative party wants to destroy four of them. Conservative? The only traditional aspects of British life to be preserved are private education, executive over-pay, the rights of


For obvious reasons, people are always looking for a nicer word for right-wing. For a while, they tried ‘free-market’ — after all, it sounds spirited and buccaneering — but the 2008 financial crisis left that one holed below the waterline. There was a brief fashion for trying to make the word ‘laissez-faire’ sound attractive, but

Diary – 11 February 2012

One of the best things about being a writer is that you get asked to interesting places. I’ve always turned everything down because I believed I should sit at my desk and write. About six months ago, I decided to see what would happen if I accepted everything for a while. Admittedly, I had a