The King’s Head pub theatre Islington has given its last performance and people who weren’t there are telling us how it started and… EVERYTHING about it.
But that’s the rub – they weren’t there and don’t know what really happened – and are comfy with their sanitised, sentimental version.
The real thing is a good deal more interesting.
I directed the second show at the King’s Head, in 1971 and then sixteen more, finishing with a curious musical about Christopher Marlowe in 1986.
The grittiness of the enterprise is ignored or glossed over, as well as the astonishing success at attracting top reviewers and superb, established performers right from the start.
The gravest omission is a failure to credit Joan Crawford, Dan’s wife. Without her, the adventure would have crashed early on and at one moment there was a power struggle between herself and Dan for the control of the venture. Dan’s gift of the gab convinced the powers and Dan won. You can read the story in Are You Going to do That Little Jump? Vol 2
And stay tuned for more reminiscing on this epic venue.