Collected Plays for Children by Ted Hughes

Collected Plays for Children

Written by Ted Hughes
Illustrated by Quentin Blake


Collected Plays for Children by Ted Hughes

This volume contains six plays by Ted Hughes which are particularly suitable for performance by children. Four of them were published originally under the title, The Coming of the Kings and Other Plays. Added to these are Orpheus and The Pig Organ, the former only ever published in America, the latter (which was written as a libretto) never before published. Hughes enters the timeless world of folklore and fable and brings home a wonderful haul, managing to produce comedy, tragedy and magic from the same net, and then to move effortlessly between them. He makes stories from familiar elements (the Nativity, or Beauty and the Beast or a quest to save a sickening king), but approaches them from unexpected angles and sets them off in different directions. What characterizes the pieces is the energy Hughes generates not only in the unfolding action but in the drama of the language itself, which is as robustly up-to-date as it is lyrical.

About the Author

Ted Hughes

Ted Hughes was born on 17 August 1930 in Mytholmroyd, a small mill town in West Yorkshire. His father made portable wooden buildings. The family moved to Mexborough, a coal-mining town in South Yorkshire, when Hughes was seven. His parents took over a newsagent and tobacconist shop, and eventually he went to the local grammar school.

In 1948 Hughes won an Open Exhibition to Pembroke College, Cambridge. Before going there, he served two years National Service in the Royal Air Force. Between leaving Cambridge and becoming a teacher, he worked at various jobs, finally as a script-reader for Rank at their Pinewood Studios.

In 1956 Hughes married the American poet Sylvia Plath, who died in 1963, and they had two children. He remarried in 1970. He was awarded the OBE in 1977, created Poet Laureate in December 1984 and appointed to the Order of Merit in 1998. He died in October 1998.

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Book Info


144 pages


Ted Hughes
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Author's Website


Faber & Faber

Publication date

5th November 2001



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