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WordTheatre Presents

Harriet Walter & Guy Paul: Words Laid Bare

The Short Stories of Brian Doyle

Monday, July 2nd

at 7:00pm

40 Dover Street 
W1S 4NP 
020 7499 8581

One of England’s finest actresses, Harriet Walter and her dashing American husband, Guy Paul, will delight you with the shortest short stories by Brian Doyle, one of America’s finest writers, whose words spill forth in jazzy loose fun free patterns and swirls. Original music by Composer Jonathan Sacks who will be in attendance. 

“Rarely have I seen two actors perform with greater delicacy, lightness of touch, and mutual consideration: they are simply a joy to watch.”

-Laura Barnett, Author

“Ford [is] a highly versatile and individual talent .”

–Ian Mann

“Your writing tells us that the little things are not little. You combined prose and poem (and prayer, you said) to bear witness to the miracles around us.

You strummed the English language like a guitar, plucked it like a harp, banged it like a drum. For example: “Such extraordinary ordinary succinct ancient naked stunning perfect simple ferocious love.” Nine adjectives for love may seem excessive, but maybe not.

 In May 2017 you died of a brain tumor. You were sixty years old. You said that your writing is not about you but about us. “Please,” you implored, “reach for each other. Drop the masks. Don’t be cool.”

–From “The Salt Seas Of The Heart: A Tribute To Brian Doyle” by Carol Ann Fitzgerald, Sun Magazine



At the end of last year Harriet Walter starred in the all-female Shakespeare Trilogy at the Donmar, Kings Cross, playing Brutus, Henry IV and Prospero, sometimes all three in a day. She reprised the role of Prospero in New York. With the same director, Phyllida Lloyd, she played Elizabeth I in Schiller’s Mary Stuart, winning the Evening Standard award for Best Actress and a Tony Award nomination when the play transferred to Broadway where she met her husband, and partner in this show, Guy Paul.

Harriet and Guy also played in a 2-hander Boa written especially for them and produced for the Trafalgar Studios and they also teamed up in Greg Doran’s production of Death of a Salesman starring Antony Sher for the RSC at Stratford and the West End.

Notable TV appearances include the The Crown (Clemmie Churchill), Law and Order: UKDownton AbbeyLondon Spy and Harriet Vane in Lord Peter Wimsey. Her US TV credits include The Assets and Black Sails (season 4). Harriet’s film appearances include The Sense of an EndingMindhornDenialStar Wars: the Force AwakensSuite FrançaiseMan UpThe Wedding Video, Young Victoria, Babel, Onegin, The Governess, Sense and Sensibility and Louis Malle’s Milou en Mai.

She is the author of 4 books: Brutus and Other HeroinesOther People’s ShoesMacbeth (Faber “Actors on Shakespeare” series) and the photographic book Facing It.

She was awarded a CBE in 2000 and a Damehood in 2011.


Guy Paul can be seen on film in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find ThemThe Fifth Estate and Hyde Park on Hudson. He’s also known for his performances on Broadway, performing in everything from Twelve Angry Men to Private Lives, and The King and I to Mary Stuart with Harriet Walter. Paul and Walter appeared most recently in the film, The Sense of an Ending. They also appeared together on stage in Death of a Salesman at the RSC and in the West End, and in a play written for them, Boa at Trafalgar Studios. Paul can be seen on TV in the next season of Father Brown and is currently filming the upcoming Showtime series, Patrick Melrose, starring Benedict Cumberbatch. You can catch Paul on iPlayer in BBC radio’s A Portrait of a Gentleman.



Brian Doyle (1956-2017) was a prolific, prize-winning Irish-American writer of essays, stories, and the prose poems he called “proems.” Doyle published over two dozen books and earned many honors including the American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature.

“I sometimes think there is no writer as addicted to music and swing and rhythm and cadence in prose as me; I really do want to push prose as close to music as I can and play with tone and timber in my work… Most of all I want to write like people talk and think, in jazzy loose fun free patterns and swirls…”

–Brian Doyle



Composer Jonathan Sacks has worked as a composer and orchestrator on over 30 feature films over the past 25 years, including SeabiscuitCars, and both X-Files films. He created orchestral arrangements for Metallica, Kiss, Steve Martin and The Steep Canyon Rangers. Sacks has written several dozen scores for productions with San Diego Repertory Theatre, Antaeus Theatre, and Shakespeare Festival, LA among others.

*All authors and actors involved in WordTheatre® productions donate their time and talents in support of our mission to keep language and literature alive. Due to actors’ ever shifting schedules, appearances are subject to change without notice.