A NEW play from celebrated author Sir Alan Ayckbourn opens at Scarborough’s Stephen Joseph Theatre in September.

Birthdays Past, Birthdays Present is the 83rd play from the pen of one of Britain’s greatest playwrights, Sir Alan.

This year is not only his 80th birthday, but also the 60th anniversary of his playwriting debut – The Square Cat, his first professionally produced play which opened at Scarborough’s Library Theatre on July 30, 1959.

Sir Alan said: “It’s no coincidence that this is a special year for me, being my 80th birthday celebration.

“I like to pin things on anniversaries, and I thought ‘why not birthdays?’

“It is a bit conventional to have one person maybe having his 20th birthday and his 50th and then 80th birthdays, so I thought it would be fun to do it backwards.”

Directed by the author, it will be performed by a cast of four: Jamie Baughan, Jemma Churchill, Russell Dixon and Naomi Petersen.

Design is by Kevin Jenkins, lighting design by Jason Taylor and The associate sound designer is Paul Stear.

The production itself? It is Micky’s 80th birthday, and he and his wife Meg are awaiting the arrival of their son, Adrian, and his new (and latest) fiancée, Grace.

Adrian has, according to his parents, a certain reputation regarding women, and they feel meek, mild-mannered Grace should surely be warned of this.

But are things really as they appear?

As birthday follows birthday, the truth is finally revealed about Adrian, the suburban closet Lothario.

Sir Alan added: “Usually in plays, we see the cause first and the effects follow on, but in this case, we see the effect first and our first question is, just how did we get there?

“It is really a story about a man who is trying to understand women - a sort of companion piece to my 2017 play A Brief History Of Women.”

Birthdays Past, Birthdays Present can be seen in the Round at the Stephen Joseph Theatre until October 5, at 7.30pm.

Tickets are priced from £10 and available from the box office on 01723 370541 and online at sjt.uk.com