A Kind of Alaska & One for the Road

by Harold Pinter

directed by Ron Stannard

Performed at the

Masker's Studio Theatre


20th to 23rd November 1996

A Kind of Alaska

Deborah Maria Head
Hornby David Pike
Pauline Hazel Burrows

A Kind of Alaska was first staged in 1982 as part of the triple Other Places and won Harold Pinter a Best Play of the Year Award. It was inspired by Dr. Oliver Sack’s Book Awakenings which describes his work with patients suffering from a strange epidemic illness which spread throughout the world in the 1920’s and was popularly known as ‘ Sleeping Sickness’. Many died but those who survived sank into a coma - sometimes dimly aware of their surroundings but always motionless and speechless. 40 years later, with the development of the drug L-DOPA, they erupted into life once more ....... Pinter recreates such an awakening. Deborah has been ‘asleep’ (in ‘a kind of Alaska’) for nearly 30 years. Now she comes to life again and gradually and poignantly tries to adjust to the world around her and to those who have given their lives to her care.

One For The Road

Nicolas Ken Spencer
Victor Peter Taylor
Nicky Dominic Peckham
Gila Meri Mackney

One For The Road was premiered in 1984 and was subsequently included in the triple bill Other Places. Like A Kind of Alaska it won the play of the year award but its tone is very different. It is a short, angry play; harsh, disturbing and uncompromising in its exploration of psychological torture and the corrupting effect of total power. It is influenced by Pinter’s involvement with Amnesty International but he deliberately avoids identifying his characters with any particular country. That, after all, is the point: in an interview on the play and its politics Pinter says “There are at least 90 countries that practice torture as an accepted routine. It is only too easy to ignore the horror of what’s going on around us. The facts this play refers to are facts I wish the audience to know about, to recognise.”

For the Maskers
Director Ron Stannard
Stage Manager Martin Ingoe
Set design / Painting Ken Spencer
Lighting Clive Weeks, Katie Annstasi, Eve Shelly
Sound Lawrie Gee, Martin Ingoe
Wardrobe The Maskers
Set construction Bryan Langford, Douglas Sheill, Goof Cook
Stage Crew Andy Roberts, Garry Orchard, David Hartill
Front of House Management and Box Office Belinda Drew



click on a photo to enlarge it

A Kind of Alaska - Maria Head & David Pike
A Kind of Alaska - Maria Head & Hazel Burrows
A Kind of Alaska - Maria Head
One for the Road - Peter Taylor & Ken Spencer
One for the Road - Ken Spencer & Meri Mackney
One for the Road - Peter Taylor & Ken Spencer

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Maskers Theatre Company
Off Emsworth Road
SO15 3LX

Registered Charity 900067

Established 1968

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