Representing someone biographically changes depending on the medium. While non-fiction demands accuracy and verification of facts, theatre seems to encourage storytelling and fantastical representations. This paper looks at the differing expectations audiences have of theatre compared to the expectations readers have of books. It also contrasts cases where writers have been punished for lying in their memoirs while playwrights have been able to invent huge parts of their historical and biographical plays.
The paper looks at the issues involved in writing plays about real people and discusses what happens when you find a hidden story and reinvent it; taking liberties with time and space to put characters together on stage who were never together in real life. What ethical dilemmas are involved in working this way and mixing truth and fiction? Should a hidden story remain hidden or does the truth deserve to be told?