It was 1977, the year of skin-tight polyester, the Queen’s Silver Jubilee and Saturday Night Fever. The Sex Pistols were storming up the charts, skateboarding was the latest craze and Angela Rippon danced with Morecambe & Wise.
And at Hampstead Theatre in London, Mike Leigh and his cast were putting the finishing touches to Abigail’s Party, a ferocious black comedy and landmark of twentieth century theatre.
In her suburban living room, Beverly prepares for the arrival of her guests. She and husband Laurence will play host to neighbours Angela, Tony and Sue. As the alcohol flows and the ‘nibbles’ are handed around, Mike Leigh’s ruthless, achingly funny examination of 1970s British life begins…
Abigail’s Party was premiered at the Hampstead Theatre in 1977, with the role of Beverly being immortalized by Alison Steadman. A record sixteen million people watched its broadcast as Play for Today, underlining its status as a true modern classic and national treasure.
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