1984: Forty Years On

The 1984 season is remembered as one of the most successful during Patrick Garland's tenure as Artistic Director. The opening production set the tone: a revival of Alan Bennett's Forty Years On, a satirical comedy set in a British boarding school, which Garland had directed for its acclaimed premiere in 1968.

Paul Eddington played the Headmaster, with a young Stephen Fry reviving Bennett's role of Tempest. Garland had hoped to revive the production one more time at CFT, but ill health prevented him. It wasn't until 2017 (33 years later...) that the play was staged at CFT again under Daniel Evans in his debut season as Artistic Director, with Richard Wilson as the Headmaster and a large cast of over 50 local young people. Scroll down for costumes, photographs, casting letters, cast lists, and more...

3D scan of the school uniform costume from the Forty Years On (2017 production)

Letter to parent about Auditions for Forty Years On, 1984
Backstage photograph Forty Years On: Stephen Fry, Rowan Atkinson, Richard Briers, 1984