I wonder if Alan Bennett specified how old the writer should be in his new play The Habit Of Art. Author of a play (within the play) at the National Theatre about an imagined meeting between WH Auden and Benjamin Britten, he is, in this production, in his mid-30s.

While I enjoyed the play enormously, I didn't think for a moment that this character had written what we were seeing on stage - even the deliberately weird bits. And perhaps that didn't matter.

But, given that some of the strongest moments in the play come when Auden urges Britten to stop pussyfooting around and deal with things head-on, it's tempting to ponder whether Bennett thought about making the writer himself.



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