1995: The Hothouse
Although the 1995 season is widely remembered for the casting of Hollywood royalty Lauren Bacall in a production of The Visit in the Festival Theatre, theatregoers were also treated to an impressive array of writer-directors in the Minerva, including Harold Pinter and Alan Ayckbourn. Opening the Minerva season Pinter directed Ronald Harwood's Taking Sides, starring Michael Pennington, followed by Ayckbourn's play A Word From Our Sponsor. In the same season, also in the Minerva, Pinter appeared opposite Celia Imrie in his own play The Hothouse. It was the first revival of the play since its premiere in 1980, and the first time in 30 years that Pinter had acted in England under his own name (as opposed to his stage name David Baron). The production was a resounding success, a complete box office sell out, underscoring the Minerva's reputation for attracting master names and master plays.
Alan Ayckbourn's work returned to CFT in September 2022 with his black comedy Woman in Mind.
Production programme for The Hothouse. The 1995 season was the year CFT started to regularly produce individual production programmes, instead of two-page casts lists with annual souvenir programmes.