Kenneth Peacock Tynan(1927-1980), Writer and critic
Sitter in 19 portraits
Theatre critic. Born in Birmingham, the illegitimate son of a Midlands magnate, Tynan won a scholarship to Oxford from King Edward's School. He began his career with the Evening Standard. From 1954 to 1963 he wrote for the Observer, championing dramatists such as Osborne, Wesker, and Delaney, and the poetic drama of Eliot and Fry. He popularised Brecht and the Theatre of the Absurd in the work of Simpson and Beckett. A socialist and campaigner for nuclear disarmament, Tynan took on the Lord Chamberlain's Office in its role as theatre censor, notably with his revue Oh! Calcutta! (1969). He was the first literary manager of the National Theatre.
by Elsbeth R. Juda
archival digital print, 1953
- Tracy Tynan (daughter)
Watch our playlist exploring scientific techniques used by the Gallery to unlock the secrets behind our Tudor portraits.
Subjects and themes
Search the collection by themes - from pets to weddings!
Black History Month
Take a tour exploring our Collection created by Alayo Akinkugbe for Black History Month in 2020.
A Picture of Health
Learn about pioneers in medicine, health and social reform from 1840 to 1920.