John McGrath is one of those few writers who, having begun his career in a success-fully orthodox manner, came to prefer working through ‘alternative’ channels – notably, in his formation and continuing work with the two 7:84 Companies, England and Scotland, their names reflecting the persistent fact that 84 per cent of the nation's wealth is owned by seven per cent of the population. Thus, McGrath's early work as one of the creators of the vintage TV series Z Cars, and his major ‘commercial’ success with the film version of his play Events while Guarding the Bofors Gun, has been succeeded by numerous plays and productions less familiar to conventional audiences, but which have made an enormous and often stirring impact in touring venues (frequently of a less expected kind) both north and south of the border. The full range of his work is charted in the ‘NTQ Checklist’ which follows this interview, and its development through to the mid– 'seventies was discussed in the earlier interview with McGrath in TQ19. reprinted in New Theatre Voices of the Seventies, edited by Simon Trussler (Methuen, 1981). Here, Tony Mitchell talks with John McGrath about some of his more recent work, and discusses his views on the nature of popular theatre, as set out in his important study of the subject, A Good Night Out (Methuen, 1981).