'I sold my home to house-sit' by Ros Anderson in The Guardian
"There are many important people in the story of the early-to-mid-nineties new writing boom apart from the writers themselves and the directors who staged the plays.
There was Stephen Daldry, Robin Hooper, Graham Whybrow and Ian Rickson at the Royal Court: Max Stafford-Clark: Dominic Dromgoole, Nick Drake and Joanne Reardon at the Bush: Paul Sirett and Lin Coghlan at the Soho: Ted Craig, Phil Wilmott and Ken McClymont elsewhere on the fringe: agents Alan Radcliffe, Mel Kenyon and Nick Marston and of course Sue Higginson, Jack Bradley, Nicky Wright and Diane Borger at the NT and NT Studio - to name but a few - before anyone gets upset at being left out.
But one great unsung hero encouraging writers in their first or second plays is my friend and writer Stephen Wakelam. Steve was pretty much the in-house mentor for young playwrights at the NT Studio in the mid-nineties and as well as myself took Martin McDonagh, Jonathan Harvey, Roy Williams, Abi Morgan and Moira Buffini amongst others under his wing.
Steve would no doubt modestly get flustered at the thought and say the writers were going to do it anyway but I think he's too modest and know he helped us all in different ways at that stage. He guided me wisely away from writing a play set in a betting shop and steered me towards Chekhov. We ruminated over many pints the change in the air with the Tory demise and the New Labour beginning. 'Summer Begins' was one fantastically happy result of SW's wise nudging. But as he said in the Guardian on Saturday he's been wandering fantastically abroad these last ten years and almost as soon we became friendly he was off. But we've just about kept in touch these last years with the odd phone call, pint, these days email and even trip to the theatre. Good on yer Steve. Posted by David Eldridge at 09.36"