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When the National Theatre needed a last-minute substitute for a canceled production of As You Like It, Kenneth Tynan decided to stage Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, a work by an unfamiliar author that had received discouraging notices from provincial critics at its Edinburgh Festival debut. Of course, the play, when it opened in April 1967, met with universal acclaim. In New York the next year, it was chosen best play by the Drama Critics Circle. In such an unlikely way, Tom Stoppard came to light. Born in Czechoslovakia, a country he left (for Singapore) when he was an infant, he began his literary career as a journalist in Bristol, where play reviewing led to playwriting. After Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, Stoppard's reputation suffered through the production of a number of minor works, whose intellectual preoccupations were shrugged off by reviewers: Enter a Free Man (1968; "an adolescent twinge of a play," N.Y. Times), The Real Inspector Hound (1968; "lightweight," N.Y. Times), and After Magritte. But in the 1970s, the initial enthusiasms aroused by Rosencrantz and Guildenstern were more than vindicated by the production of two full-length plays, Jumpers (1974) and the antiwar play Travesties (1975), whose immense verbal and theatrical inventiveness made them absolute successes on both sides of the Atlantic. Stoppard's method from the start has been to contrive explanations for highly unlikely encounters---of objects (the ironing board, old lady, and bowler hat of After Magritte), characters (Joyce, Lenin, and Tzara in Travesties), and even plays (Hamlet, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, The Importance of Being Earnest, Travesties, and The Real Thing, 1982). In the 1970s, Tynan called for Stoppard---as a Czech and as an artist---to engage himself politically. But although political subjects have since found their way into pieces from Every Good Boy Deserves Favor (1977) to Squaring the Circle (1985), politics and art seem to have become just two more of the playwright's irreconcilables, which meet, but never join, in the logical frames of his comedy. The presence of political material---such as the Lenin sections that nearly ruin the second part of Travesties---has occasionally strained the structure of the plays. But in The Real Thing Stoppard is comfortable enough with the satire on art and activism to bring a third subject, love, into the mix. Stoppard has acknowledged his Eastern European heritage nonpolitically, in a series of adaptations of plays by Arthur Schnitzler (see Vol. 2), Johann Nestroy, and Ferenc Molnar. (Bowker Author Biography) Tom Stoppard is the author of many plays, including Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, Jumpers, Travesties, and The Invention of Love. He lives in London. (Publisher Provided)
— biography from Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead
… (more)
Disambiguation Notice

(dut)The author was born as Tomas Straussler. After the death of his father, his mother married the Brittish Major Stoppard, and Tom since accepted his name.

Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead 7,288 copies, 81 reviews
Arcadia 2,473 copies, 50 reviews
Travesties 903 copies, 11 reviews
The Real Thing 661 copies, 8 reviews
The Invention of Love 647 copies, 10 reviews
Jumpers 572 copies, 5 reviews
Shakespeare In Love [1998 film] (Screenwriter) 432 copies, 7 reviews
Tom Stoppard Plays 5 391 copies, 5 reviews
Brazil [1985 film] (Screenwriter) 311 copies, 3 reviews
The Real Inspector Hound 281 copies, 6 reviews
Rock 'n' Roll: A New Play 279 copies, 8 reviews
Shakespeare in Love: A Screenplay 276 copies, 4 reviews
Lord Malquist & Mr Moon 222 copies, 1 review
Indian Ink 176 copies, 3 reviews
Hapgood 176 copies, 6 reviews
Night and Day 153 copies, 2 reviews
Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead [1990 film] (Director) 106 copies, 1 review
Empire of the Sun [1987 film] (Screenwriter) 102 copies, 3 reviews
Dogg's Hamlet, Cahoot's Macbeth 100 copies, 2 reviews
Enter a Free Man 94 copies, 1 review
Anna Karenina [2012 film] (Screenwriter) 93 copies, 2 reviews
On the Razzle 90 copies, 1 review
The Hard Problem 58 copies, 1 review
Rough Crossing 58 copies
After Magritte 57 copies
Enigma [2001 film] (Screenwriter) 53 copies, 2 reviews
The Russia House [1990 film] (Screenwriter) 49 copies
Leopoldstadt 40 copies, 3 reviews
Albert's Bridge 29 copies
If You're Glad I'll be Frank 26 copies, 1 review
Parade's End 21 copies
Tulip Fever [2017 film] (Screenwriter) 19 copies, 1 review
Darkside 12 copies
Billy Bathgate [1991 film] (Screenwriter) 10 copies
Despair [1978 film] (Screenwriter) 9 copies, 2 reviews
Poodle Springs [1998 film] (Writer) 7 copies
The Boundary 4 copies
Galileo 3 copies
Travesties [theatre programme] (Contributor) 1 copy
Teeth 1 copy
The Cherry Orchard (Adapter, some editions) 1,778 copies, 25 reviews
The Seagull (Translator, some editions) 997 copies, 14 reviews
The Pleasure of Reading (Contributor) 179 copies, 7 reviews
Henry IV (Translator, some editions) 170 copies, 5 reviews
Masterpieces of the Drama (Contributor) 165 copies, 2 reviews
Nine Plays of the Modern Theater (Contributor) 163 copies, 1 review
Counting My Chickens . . .: And Other Home Thoughts (Introduction) 153 copies, 2 reviews
Ivanov (some editions) 151 copies, 6 reviews
Largo Desolato (Translator, some editions) 131 copies, 1 review
Granta 119: Britain (Contributor) 100 copies
Undiscovered Country (Translator, some editions) 61 copies, 1 review
What's Your Story? [postcard collection] (Contributor) 56 copies, 3 reviews

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Short biography
Tom Stoppard was born Tomáš Straussler to a Jewish family in Zlín, Czechoslovakia. With their parents Eugen Straussler, a doctor employed by the Bata shoe company, and Martha Becková, he and his brother fled the country in 1939 to escape Nazi occupation. \The family went to Singapore, where Bata had a factory. Tom, his mother and brother fled to Australia in 1941. Tom spent three years in a boarding school in Darjeeling, India. In 1945, his mother married Kenneth Stoppard. Tom attended the Dolphin School in Nottinghamshire, and later Pocklington School in Yorkshire. He left school at age 17 and began working as a journalist for the Western Daily Press in Bristol. IHe also wrote short radio plays and in 1960, moved to London and launched himself as a playwright with A Walk on the Water, later re-titled Enter a Free Man.
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