Finborough Theatre Presents HOME DEATH, Begins July 10
Home Death, a new play by Olivier Award winner Nell Dunn, will play for six performances only on Sunday and Monday evenings from Sunday, 10 July 2011 (Press Night: Monday, 11 July 2011 at 7.30pm) at the multi-award-winning Finborough Theatre.
In our materialist culture obsessed with youth, death has become the ultimate taboo. Inspired by real life stories, Home Death is an unflinching yet ultimately uplifting dissection of how our society deals with the reality of dying.
64% of us want to die at home, but in reality only a quarter of us do. A lingering death in a nursing home is one of the biggest fears of the elderly, and yet research from the UK thinktank Demos predicts that by 2013, 90% of us will die in the soulless setting of a hospital ward.
Home Death is a courageous and profoundly compassionate new play that raises essential and urgent questions about palliative care in the UK, and celebrates the strength of friendship and love.
Playwright Nell Dunn is best known for the 1963 publication of Up the Junction, a series of short stories set in South London. The book became a controversial success because of its vibrant, realistic and nonjudgmental portrait of the working classes. It was filmed for television and film and was awarded the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize. In 1967, she published her first novel Poor Cow which was made into a film starring Carol White and Terence Stamp, directed by Ken Loach. Her more recent adult books are Grandmothers (1991) and My Silver Shoes (1996). Dunn's acclaimed play Steaming was produced in 1981, won the Society of West End Theatre Award, now known as the Olivier Award, for Best Comedy, and was subsequently filmed by Joseph Losey with Vanessa Redgrave, Sarah Miles, and Diana Dors. Her first television film Every Breath You Take was shown in 1987. She has also written Sisters, a film script commissioned by the BBC. She won the 1982 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize. Her 2003 play Cancer Tales has toured internationally and been greatly supported the medical profession.
Director Fiona Morrell has recently completed eighteen months as a Staff Director at The National Theatre. Productions included Nation, adapted from Terry Pratchett's novel by Mark Ravenhill, The White Guard by Bulgakov, adapted by Andrew Upton, Moira Buffini's Welcome to Thebes and Bryony Lavery's Six Seeds. She has directed The Water's Edge by Theresa Rebeck (Arcola Theatre), Acquaintances and National Amnesty by Dominic Mitchell (Pleasance London) and The Alice Project (Camden People's Theatre, BAC and the Lakeside Colchester). Fiona has also directed short plays/readings at RADA, Arcola Theatre, Hampstead Theatre, Oval House, Theatre 503 and The National Theatre Studio. She has assisted at Arcola Theatre, Almeida Theatre and Second Stage New York. She is a Creative Associate of Strawberry Vale Productions.
Home Death is produced by Neil McPherson, Artistic Director of the Finborough Theatre, and Strawberry Vale Productions . Strawberry Vale Productions is an award-winning theatre and film Production Company, run by Lilli and Hana Geissendorfer since 2007. It works with writers and directors to realise their creative ambitions and make work that speaks to the world we live in. Recent credits include Caryl Churchill's Light Shining in Buckinghamshire (Arcola Theatre) and Penelope Skinner's Eigengrau (Bush Theatre), both directed by Polly Findlay; Niklas Radstrom's Monsters (Arcola Theatre), directed by Chris Haydon, and Hana's third short film Hermann, which won the Jury Prize at the Palm Springs International Short Film Fest 2010. Lilli recently won the inaugural Off West End Award for Best Producer. www.strawberryvaleproductions.com
Judith Amsenga's credits include Mixed up North (National Tour), Communication Breakdown (Theatre 503) and Cycle (Soho Theatre); Linda Broughton's many credits include The December Man/L'homme de decembre (Finborough Theatre), A Day in the Death of Joe Egg (Nottingham Playhouse), 2nd May 1997, I Like Mine with a Kiss (Bush Theatre), Ivanov, The Chalk Garden (Donmar Warehouse) and The Crucible, Absence of War, Racing Demon (Birmingham Rep); Marcus Cunningham's credits include Hamlet, The White Guard, Burnt by the Sun, The Life of Galileo, Jerry Springer - The Opera (all National Theatre), Mamma Mia! (International Tour) and Martin Guerre (Prince Edward Theatre). Television credits include Doc Martin, Doctor Who, The Fugitives; Amelia Donkor 's credits include Six Seeds (National Theatre), Arabian Nights (New Vic Theatre), Shangri-la (Lime Pictures at the Roundhouse) and Rage Fantasies (Theatre 503). Television credits include Doctors, The Bill, Trial and Retribution and Holby City; Laura Fitzpatrick's credits include Cancer Tales (International tour), February (Hampstead Theatre), The Importance of Being Earnest (National tour), Return of the Native (Theatre Royal, Bath); Sara Griffiths' credits include The Gambler, Future Me (Theatre 503), An Inspector Calls, Machinal, Arcadia, Inadmissible Evidence (all National Theatre) and Coriolanus (West Yorkshire Playhouse). Numerous television credits include Casualty, Emmerdale, EastEnders and Doctors; Richard Keightley 's credits include Twelfth Night (National Theatre), A Midsummer Night's Dream (Rose Theatre, Kingston), Hamlet (World Tour), A Model for Mankind (Cock Tavern Theatre), A Christmas Carol (European Tour), La Dispute (Theatre du Preau, Normandy) and A Midsummer Night's Dream (Oxford Shakespeare Company); David Kershaw 's theatre credits include The Representative, I Wish to Die Singing, The New Morality (Finborough Theatre), The Alchemist (National Tour), The Great Gatsby (National Tour), Macbeth (National Tour), The Taming of the Shrew (Arcola Theatre), A Midsummer Night's Dream, Henry IV Part 1, Twelfth Night, Julius Caesar, Coriolanus and Measure for Measure (St George's Theatre, London). Film credits include Tomb Raider 2 and Encounters. Numerous television credits include Bergerac, All Creatures Great and Small, EastEnders, The Bill, Crown Prosecutor, Crimewatch, Scarred, Cave Dog, Supergirly, Oscar Charlie, If and Decoding the Papyri; Ania Marson 's theatre credits include Camus' Les Justes (Bridge Lane Theatre), Perdition (Royal Court Theatre) and Hotel Sorrento (Cock Tavern). Her film credits include Puppet on a Chain, Nicholas and Alexandra, The Abdication (in which she co-starred with Liv Ullman) and Nic Roeg's Bad Timing. Television credits include Casanova, The Strauss Family, Target, Blake's 7, Marie Curie, Small Zones, Dorabella, Emma and Merchant in Venice; Eunice Roberts recently starred in Mary Broome (Orange Tree Theatre, Richmond) and has toured the US with The Winter's Tale, The Cherry Orchard, Much Ado About Nothing, All's Well That Ends Well and A Midsummer Night's Dream (AFTLS); Malcolm Tierney 's numerous stage credits include The Last Confessor (UK Tour), Hecuba (Royal Shakespeare Company), Wit (Vaudeville Theatre), Noises Off (Comedy Theatre) and Les Blancs (Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester). Television includes Hindenburg, Nicholas Nickleby, When Hitler Invaded Britain, The Quiet Policeman, Dalziel and Pascoe, Love Joy and The Bill. Film credits include Star Wars, Braveheart, In the Name of the Father, Shiner, The Final Curtain, The Saint and Jerzy.
The Press on Home Death
"But who, as cuts deepen, will take up Nell Dunn's fine and spirited verbatim play, Home Death, given a rehearsed reading at RADA last week?" Susannah Clapp, The Observer
The Press on Nell Dunn's Cancer Tales
"These are moving, authentic voices, speaking from real experience and real emotion. Nell Dunn has an unparalleled ear for the speaking voice of emotion, across the social classes. She treats an important and painful subject with insight, dignity and bravery. She is never sentimental, never alarmist, always true." Margaret Drabble
"[Nell Dunn] is fascinated by human fragility - and knows exactly how easy it would be to strike the wrong note. But there is no chance of that: she has perfect pitch and has pieced together a drama of heart and ear - this is editing as art. ... The most remarkable thing of all about these pieces is that they never seem mawkish or sensational - they are about communication and truth and learning to read between the lines." Kate Kellaway, The Observer
The Press on Director Fiona Morrell
"The savage passions at the drama's heart retain their compulsion, and Fiona Morrell's production is skilfully acted and staged" The Times on The Water's Edge
"What works, brilliantly so, is the atmospheric production directed by Fiona Morrell. On a beautifully lit lakeside house - the audience walks through trees to get to their seats - Morrell and designer Charlie Damigos conjure up a mysterious world where reality could, just possibly, merge with myth". The Stage on The Water's Edge
Sundays and Mondays, 10, 11, 17, 18, 24, 25 July 2011
Evenings at 7.30pm.
Ticket Prices £13, £9 concessions
Performance Length: Approximately 2 hours and 15 minutes including one interval.