Scope and Content of Collection
Language of Material:
University of California, Davis Library, Dept. of Special Collections
Title: Joint Stock Theatre Group Archives
Joint Stock Theatre Group
Identifier/Call Number: D-035
26.6 linear feet
Date (inclusive): 1973-1991
Abstract: A British experimental theatre group founded in 1974 by Max
Stafford-Clark, David Hare, and David Aukin, the Joint Stock Theatre Group was dedicated to developing new writing for the
theatre. Workshops set up by William Gaskill and Max Stafford-Clark resulted in a unique working method which placed actors
and director in collaboration with the playwright. The Archives contain business correspondence, financial records, legal
documents, photographs, production files, promotional materials, and scripts (published and original prompt copies) of
Physical Location: Researchers should contact Archives and Special Collections to request
collections, as many are stored offsite.
A British experimental theatre group founded in 1974 by Max Stafford-Clark, David Hare, and David Aukin, the Joint Stock
Theatre Group was dedicated to developing new writing for the theatre. Workshops set up by William Gaskill and Max
Stafford-Clark resulted in a unique working method which placed actors and director in collaboration with the playwright.
In January of 1974, the Joint Stock Theatre Group presented its inaugural production,
The Speakers,adapted by William Gaskill and Max Stafford-Clark from a book by Heathcote
Williams. Major productions which followed included
The Great Celestial Cow,
The Ragged Trousered Philanthropist,and
Sanctuary.The last of Joint Stock's productions,
A Child in the Heartand
Promised Landwere offered during the 1988-1989 season.
A revenue client of the Arts Council of Great Britain since 1974, Joint Stock relied heavily on government subsidy to
remain financially solvent. Its demise was imminent when, due to general economic woes and changing government policy towards
the arts, the company was dropped from the client list. Because the "Joint Stock Method" required an inordinate amount of
time to mount a production thus limiting the number of productions annually, and because the company presented mainly new,
unproven plays, Joint Stock could not survive financially without Arts Council support. In June of 1991, the Joint Stock
Theatre Group Board of Directors gave instructions that the Companies House be informed that the company had ceased to exist
and should be struck from the Register of Companies
Scope and Content of Collection
Organized into eight series: 1. Financial Records, 2. Photographs, 3. Production Files, 4. Scripts, 5. Clippings, 6.
Promotional Materials, 7. Company Business, 8. Sound recordings.
Collection is open for research.
Arranged and described by Levi Damon Phillips in October 1993. EAD finding aid created by Sara Gunasekara in March 2004.
EAD finding aid updated by Liz Phillips in October 2020.
Acquired in 1992 from the company's executor, Carl Proctor.
[Identification of item], Joint Stock Theatre Group Archives, D-035, Archives and Special Collections, UC Davis Library,
University of California, Davis.
All applicable copyrights for the collection are protected under chapter 17 of the U.S. Copyright Code. Requests for
permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head of Special Collections. Permission
for publication is given on behalf of the Regents of the University of California as the owner of the physical items. It is
not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the researcher.
Subjects and Indexing Terms
English drama -- 20th century
Experimental theater -- Great Britain
Joint Stock Theatre Group -- Archives
Hare, David, 1947-