Last week, as Richard II Live from Stratford-upon-Avon unfolded, there were several moments when I thought of my English teacher at school, the late Brian Jones. Mr Jones, as he was to us in our mid-teens, was a cool poet who had even been on television. He was also, as I hope we recognised then, a gloriously inspirational teacher, and his classes contributed hugely, vitally, to my love of our language. Which, give or take a twist or two, runs right through to my work with the Royal Shakespeare Company.
I lost touch with Brian after school, even though, as I chronicled in a blog post back in August 2009, I tried to find him again when I produced a film of The Waste Land in the mid-1990s. My post was written after I’d read Paul McLoughlin’s Guardian obituary, and remarkably the comments to it (which are still archived on this site, even if the formatting is a bit awry) became a small memorial to his influence on many, many others. So now I am delighted to highlight the news that a new edition of his poetry, for so long out of print, has been published.
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