Peter Bucknell
(1923-1993)


Wimbledon School of Art's Principal 1964-1969


Full-time lecturer in the Theatre Department from 1952 until 1964, during which period he became head of the department. He began working at Wimbledon as a part-time lecturer in 1948, soon after graduating from the Royal College of Art.

A flamboyant character with excellent lecturing skills who still delivered a series of lectures on Theatre History to first year students when Principal. Bucknell's evocation of a Kabuki actor riding a horse unfailingly brings an inner chuckle, so memorable to this day. However, his appraisals of student work could at times be brutal as Martin Morley, a student at the time when Bucknell was still Head of the Theatre Department, remembers: "I could have done without the ritual humiliations that Bucknell used to hand out at the group assessments, reducing many to tears, but he could encourage, and when he did it was good."

mp.3 format, 512 kb, 1 minute 09 seconds - Catherine Negri (Richard Negri's eldest daughter) talking of Peter Bucknell's visits to the Negri home.


Bucknell posed in Principalian mode

As Oberon in an end of year Wimbledon
production of A Midsummer's Night's Dream
in 1962

Bucknell as Oberon on the extreme left





The Gay Lord Quex (Arthur Wing Pinero). Settings for the third year
production at the end of the academic year in June 1964. Very typical of
the sensibilities of theatre design at the time, it represented qualities soon
to disappear almost completely with Negri's arrival as Head of Department
in the autumn.




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