by Braham Murray - £25.99 A+C Black (2007)
paperback ISBN 13: 9780713684902 | ISBN 10: 0713684909
The Worst It Can Be is a Disaster is the autobiography of Braham Murray, founding director of the Royal Exchange Manchester which in 2006 celebrated its thirtieth anniversary.
Born into a Jewish family, Braham Murray struggled against his parents' expectations that he should follow them into the world of commerce; instead he became at twenty-two the youngest artistic director in the country when he took over Century Theatre, a theatre company based in Manchester.
From his formative years at school, where he first experienced the thrill of directing, and subsequently University College Oxford, where as the president of the Experimental Theatre Club his future as a theatre director was launched, the story of Braham Murray is an inspiring account of one man's pursuit of their dream.
Detailing his relationships and the theatrical successes and flops along the way, the narrative takes us through his early years with Century Theatre, with the 69 Theatre Company, and the birth of the Royal Exchange Manchester in the heart of Manchester in 1976. Twenty years later, the theatre rose from the ashes of the IRA bomb brilliantly opening a new production on time just ten days after the bomb had destroyed the city centre.
The role and influence of the author's Jewish heritage and of his key collaborators - including Caspar Wrede and Michael Elliott - are explored in this illuminating and inspiring account of one of English theatre's great directors.
(Price & availability last checked: July 2018)
In booklists: Manchester, Film and Theatre in Liverpool and the North West, Theatre, Jewish Lives, Directors, Screenwriters and Playwrights, In categories: Local Interest, Media & Culture, Music & Performing Arts, History & Biography, Jewish Diaspora,