HANDWRITTEN LYRICS
This page contains a facsimile from our rolling exhibition of items associated with Noel Coward. Some of them will be from out-of-print publications and others from the archives of the Coward Estate.
 
Shown below is a facsimile of Coward's handwritten lyrics for 'There Are Bad Times Just Around the Corner.' Graham Payn was once asked whether Coward wrote by hand or by typewriter.
 
His response was "Mostly by hand, but some of the plays that he said he wrote so quickly, like in three days or four days or five days - that did happen, but what he didn't say was that he'd had the thing on his mind for quite a long time, really. So he'd really been prepared and he could sit at the typewriter and put it straight on the script - like that, on the paper, I mean, because he could read what the dialogue would sound like better in typescript." He also talked about the size of Noel Coward's handwriting which he described as "tiny, tiny, tiny writing, difficult to read."
 
Although the page here is slightly reduced in size (it is really Foolscap), you can see how relatively small it actually is. Coward's typewriter must have been an essential aid to his work and perhaps more importantly in helping others to read it!
 

 

 

Further examples of Coward's handwriting can be seen in the book "The Art of Noel Coward" by Robert Greacen - published in the UK by The Hand And Flower Press, Aldington, Kent and in the US by The British Book Centre Inc., New York in 1953.
 
All facsimiles that are included here are at 75 dpi.

 Copyright - The Noel Coward Society - May 2001