Leon has written adaptations of plays, books and articles in books over many years. His writing is, not surprisingly, all about theatre.
Publications and Adaptations
His first book, The Making of Nicholas Nickleby, told the story of the creation of the original Royal Shakespeare Company production, from first conception to the final award-winning production. As Assistant Director on the production he was able to keep a record of the whole, radical and ground-breaking process. The book was published in the UK by Heinemann and in the USA by Penguin. Although now out of print, it can usually be easily obtained via: www.Abe.com internet book services.
His new book, Rehearsing Shakespeare, will be published by Routledge in March 2021. His last book, by Routledge, www.Routledge.co.uk, Performance in Bali, is co-written with the distinguished Dalang I Nyoman Sedana, who is a well-known Balinese performer, shadow puppet master and professor at ISI Institute in Denpassar, Bali. The book explores Balinese performance through the eyes of the performer and the audience. It looks at training and performance techniques from the inside Balinese perspective and the outsider looking in. It also explores connections and differences with western training approaches to performance.
He wrote a detailed, book length commentary of an edition of Measure for Measure, published by Applause Books, New York. The edition is part of a series of Shakespeare texts, The Applause Shakespeare Library, that have an experienced theatre director working through every page of the play and commenting on what they believe Shakespeare was trying to indicate for actors and directors. The series includes commentaries by a number of different leading theatre directors: www.applausepub.com
Leon also wrote the chapter on South East Asian Theatre for the Oxford Illustrated History of Theatre, a book that has now become the key work for students of drama across the world. The chapter explores all the major forms of theatre throughout the countries of the region: www.oup.co.uk
As part of his work on Asian theatre, as a director and professor, he contributed a chapter to another book concerned with ideas about change in Asian societies. The book looks at many areas of history, language, performance and politics. His chapter entitled The Struggle for Traditional Performance Survival in S.E. Asia explore Vietnamese Water Puppet Theatre and folk opera, Mor Lam, from Thailand. The book is Asian Futures and Asian Traditions published by Global Oriental: www.globaloriental.co.uk.
In addition to other conference papers etc. Leon has, in addition to writing a play, Illusions, Delusions and Conclusions, also adapted a number of plays for performance:
Handan Shakespearian Dream, Performed at St Michael’s Church theatre, London
The Adventures of Dick Turpin Performed at Clifftown Theatre, Southend
The Prisoner of Zenda Performed at Clifftown Theatre, Southend
• Peter Pan (adapted from JM Barrie’s), performed at The Grand Theatre, Cultural Centre, Hong Kong
• Wars of the Roses (adapted from Shakespeare’s Henry VI Part One, Two and Three), performed at Stratford Festival, Canada
• St Stephen’s Green or The Generous Lovers (by William Phillips), performed at Abbey Theatre, Dublin, Ireland
• Raffles (by E.W. Hornung), performed at Watford Palace Theatre, UK
• Lulu (adapted from Earth Spirit and Pandora’s Box by Frank Wedekind), performed at Watford Palace Theatre, U
• A Touch of Class (adapted from Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme by Moliere), performed at Lyric Theatre, Belfast, N. Ireland
• 14 Medieval Mystery Plays (adapted into single script), performed in Nashville, USA • Woyzeck (by George Buchner), performed at The Bristol Old Vic, UK • The Triumph of Love (by Marivaux)
• Rahu, devised work based on a traditional Thai legend
He has worked in radio broadcasting as a director of a play, The Hidden Curriculum by Belfast playwright Graham Reid and as a writer narrator of an article about life in Belfast in the early 1980’s: Why Stand so Aghast? (1982) Radio 4.