Peter Barnes's 1968 play The Ruling Class has been unseen in the West End since its original production (though it was subsequently made into a film in 1972 starring Peter O'Toole). But more than one friend has told me that they have appeared in it in University productions, so the play is far from forgotten. It nevertheless remains a bold proposition for the West End - and a still radical one, in its portrait of a ruthless power struggle, seemingly remote for most spectators,... Read more
Cast includes James McAvoy Jack, a possible paranoid schizophrenic with a Messiah complex, inherits the title of the 14th Earl of Gurney after his father passes away in a bizarre accident. Singularly unsuited to a life in the upper echelons of elite society, Jack finds himself at the centre of a ruthless power struggle as his scheming family strives to uphold their reputation.