Alan Bennett Facts not Fiction in a Van

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What do Ladies in Vans, Smut and Talking Heads have in common? They are works by Alan Bennett, Lady in the Van being his latest DVD to be released.

Alan Bennett mini Biography

  • Bennett was born 1934 in Armley the son of a co-op butcher.
  • He went to Leeds Modern School and is reputed to have been in the same class as Bradford Taylor Bradford
  • At one time he thought he looked like a vicar and that this would become his occupation
  • Alan Bennett is an award-winning dramatist and screenwriter.
  • He was one of the original members of Beyond the Fringe, a satirical review that was a hit in both the London and on Broadway.
  • Other members were Peter Cook, Jonathan Miller and Dudley Moore.
  • Bennett had a close relationship with ‘Cafe Anne’ Davies of Clapham. There were portraits of him posing with the painter David Hockney on the walls of Davies’s tearoom until her demise in 2009.

Literary Works

  • Alan wrote the plays The Madness of King George and The History Boys and Lady In The Van.
  • He features on many peoples top Yorkshiremen lists including that published by biography on line listed only 36th.
  • He has survived 9 years since admitting he had long  suffered with colon cancer.
  • Alan was given the sobriquet “curmudgeon laureate” by Mark Jones.
  • A Private Function showed his droll sense of humour as did Take a Pew a skit on ‘with it’ vicars from the Edinburgh fringe

‘Alan Bennett at the BBC’ featured above is a DVD that includes his first television play, A Day Out, autobiographical pieces such as Dinner at Noon and Portrait or Bust and celebrated plays such as A Woman of No Importance, An Englishman Abroad and A Question of Attribution.

The Lady in the Van

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Based on the true story of Miss Shepherd was a woman of uncertain origins who “temporarily” parked her van in Bennett’s driveway and proceeded to live there for 15 years. The film version stars Dame Maggie Smith.

A wide range of other titles is available from Amazon

 

Definitions

OED defines smut as lascivious talk or pictures…. There are some less refined definitions of smut on the Urban dictionary.

Talking heads  were an American band and is now a  Sheffield based Language Service in addition to being the Alan Bennett series of dramatic monologues written for BBC television.

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One Response to Alan Bennett Facts not Fiction in a Van

  1. Paul Croft says:

    Leeds Modern was an all boys school so Barbara Taylor Bradford could not have attended. She may have been at his primary school.