John Bett, Neil McCaul and Simon Lee Phillips Lead Finborough Theatre's THE DRAWER BOY, June 19-July 14


The London premiere of the multi-award winning international hit play from one of Canada's leading playwrights, Michael Healey, The Drawer Boy opens at the Finborough Theatre for a limited four week run, opening Tuesday, 19 June 2012 (Press Night: Thursday, 21 June 2012), starring John Bett, Neil McCaul and Simon Lee Phillips.

Miles, an energetic and idealistic young actor, knocks on the door of an isolated farmhouse in rural Canada, seeking material for a new play he’s working on. He discovers Morgan, a gruff farmer working tooth and nail to survive, and Angus, his lifelong friend, who has long since lost track of the world. But when The Farmers let the city-boy into their home, Miles’ search for a story gradually unearths a devastating truth that threatens to destroy the tranquil lives of his hosts forever. Funny and moving, The Drawer Boy is a multi-award winning bitter-sweet tale of the power of storytelling, friendship, and the very thin line between truth and fiction.

The Drawer Boy premiered at Toronto’s acclaimed Theatre Passe Muraille, winning the Dora Mavor Moore Award (Canada’s leading theatre award) for Best New Play, as well as the Chalmers Canadian Playwriting Award and the Governor General’s Literary Award. It has been produced across North America and internationally, and has been translated into German, French and Japanese.

Playwright Michael Healey trained as an actor at Toronto’s Ryerson Theatre School. He began writing for the stage in the early nineties and his first play, Kicked, was produced at the Fringe of Toronto Festival in 1996. He subsequently toured the play across Canada and internationally, and in 1998 it won Canada’s leading theatre award – the Dora Mavor Moore Award – for Best New Play. His plays include The Road To Hell (co-authored with Kate Lynch), Plan B (which again won the Dora Mavor Moore Award for Best New Play in 2002), Rune Arlidge (nominated for the Governor General’s Award in 2004), The Innocent Eye Test (Manitoba Theatre Centre and Toronto’s Royal Alexandra Theatre 2006), and Generous (winner of the Dora Mavor Moore Award for Best New Play in 2007) which received its European premiere at the Finborough Theatre in August 2009 and was revived by popular demand for a full length run in January 2010 and was named Time Out Critics' Choice. Courageous - the sequel to Generous - premiered at the Tarragon Theatre in Toronto in January 2010, and went on to win the Dora Mavor Moore Award for Best New Play. Michael Healey was Playwright-in-Residence at the Tarragon Theatre from 2000-2011. He recently resigned his post after controversy arose over programming his latest work - Proud - which satirises Canada's current political administration.

Director Eleanor Rhode is a former Resident Assistant Director at the Finborough Theatre where she has directed both sell-out runs of Generous by Michael Healey, The December Man (L’homme de décembre) for 2009’s Vibrant – A Festival of Finborough Playwrights, Barrow Hill for Vibrant – An Anniversary Festival of Finborough Playwrights in 2010 and Sihanoukville for Vibrant – A Festival of Finborough Playwrights in 2011. She was also Assistant Director on Trying and S-27. Eleanor graduated from Mountview in 2008. She went on to train at The National Theatre Studio in 2009 and is a former Staff Director at The National Theatre. Other directing includes The Gypsy Thread (National Theatre Studio), The Error of Their Ways (Cockpit Theatre), A Number (Camden People’s Theatre), This Lime Tree Bower (Edinburgh Festival), and staged readings of The Geese of Beverly Road (Theatre 503) and Photos of You Sleeping (Hampstead Theatre).
As Associate Director, she has worked on the London transfer of Lie of The Land (Arcola Theatre). Eleanor is the Artistic Director of Snapdragon Productions.

The cast includes:

John Bett

Theatre includes The Enquirer (National Theatre of Scotland), Hamlet, We the People, Love Labour’s Lost, In Extremis, Liberty, Antony and Cleopatra (Shakespeare’s Globe), The Bacchae (National Theatre of Scotland and New York), According to Ben, The Tobacco Merchant’s Lawyer, Genesis Rock, Laughing at the Fuhrer (Òran Mór, Glasgow), The Government Inspector (Tron Theatre, Glasgow, and Tour), The Sleeping Beauty (His Majesty’s Theatre, Aberdeen), Rime of the Ancient Mariner (Queen’s Hall), Scenes from An Execution for which John was awarded Best Actor in the Critics' Awards for Theatre in Scotland (Dundee Rep), Translations (Citizen’s Theatre, Glasgow), Mrs Warren’s Profession, A Christmas Carol for which John was nominated for Best Actor in the Critics' Awards for Theatre in Scotland, As You Like It, Three Sisters, Macbeth, Accidental Death of an Anarchist, The Marriage (Royal Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh), Damages (Bush Theatre), Remembrance of Things Past (National Theatre) and The Great Northern Welly Boot Show (Edinburgh Festival and The Young Vic). John was a founder member of 7:84 Theatre Company, appearing in the original production of The Cheviot, The Stag and The Black, Black Oil (Scottish Tour).

Film includes Tamara Drewe, The Golden Compass, Doctor Sleep, Mistgate, Shallow Grave, The Young Visitors, Sacred Hearts, Scotch Myths, Gregory’s Girl, Tess, Blast and the Caledonian Account.

Television includes Rab C Nesbitt, New Town, Rebus, The Strange Case of Sherlock Holmes and Arthur Conan Doyle, Casualty, The Creatives, Murder Rooms, Secret Scotland, Vanity Fair, Truth or Dare, Woodcock, Para Handy, Jute City, Down Among the Big Boys and Inspector Morse.
He also works extensively as both a writer and director for stage, radio and television. He co-wrote and directed all of Dorothy Paul’s shows including See That’s Her which won a BAFTA Light Entertainment Award. His recent play Talk About It won a Scotsman Fringe First at the Edinburgh Festival.

Neil McCaul

Theatre includes Twelfth Night (Singapore Repertory Theatre), A Round Heeled Woman (Riverside Studios and Aldwych Theatre), The Rise and Fall of Little Voice (Hull Truck Theatre, Hull), Fings Ain’t What They Used to Be (Union Theatre), Oedipus (National Theatre), Calendar Girls (Noël Coward Theatre), Sylvia (Apollo Theatre), June Moon (Vaudeville Theatre), Privates on Parade (Piccadilly Theatre), The Merchant of Venice, Trelawny of the ‘Wells’ (Old Vic Theatre), Once Upon A Time At The Adelphi (Liverpool Playhouse), Flying Under Bridges, Cor Blimey (Watford Palace Theatre), Brighton Rock (Almeida Theatre), Romeo and Juliet (English Touring Theatre), Blackbird (Southwark Playhouse), Mr England (Crucible Theatre, Sheffield), Spend Spend Spend (West Yorkshire Playhouse), Sus (Greenwich Theatre), Spin (White Bear Theatre and BAC) and Habeus Corpus (Oxford Playhouse).

Film includes The Pirates of Penzance and Billy the Kid and the Green Baize Vampire.

Television includes Holby City, Foyle’s War, Doctors, Blue Murder, Nostradamus, Most Mysterious Murders, Fifty Five Degrees North, Crossroads, Hearts and Bones, Lock, Stock, People Like Us, Where The Heart Is, A Wing and a Prayer, Father Ted Christmas Special, Get Real, Comedy Nation, Does China Exist?, Time After Time, Class Act, Up the Garden Path, Titus Andronicus, Take Me Home, The Upper Hand, The Peter Principle, Into the Fire, Casualty, Mary Rose and Minder.

Simon Lee Phillips

At the Finborough Theatre, Simon appeared in the original run of Michael Healey’s Generous (2009) and Oohrah! (2009).

Theatre includes The Bridge Project: Richard III (The Old Vic, BAM, New York City, and International Tour), Inherit the Wind (The Old Vic), Dog Fight (Arcola Theatre), Salsa Saved the Girls (Old Red Lion Theatre), Carve (Tristan Bates Theatre), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Twelfth Night (Guildford Shakespeare Company), The Infant (Old Red Lion Theatre and Edinburgh Festival) and Resistance (National and European Tours).

Snapdragon Productions is led by Artistic Director Eleanor Rhode and Producer Sarah Loader, who founded the company in 2009. Their productions include the European premiere of Michael Healey's Generous (Finborough Theatre) which enjoyed two sell-out runs and was named Time Out’s Critics’ Choice; the award-winning European premiere of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s musical Me and Juliet (Finborough Theatre); Anna Karenina (Arcola Theatre); and a coproduction of the world premiere of Anders Lustgarten's A Day at the Racists (Finborough Theatre and the Broadway Theatre, Barking) which was nominated for the 2010 TMA Award for Outstanding Achievement in Regional Theatre and won the playwright the Inaugural Harold Pinter Award for Playwriting. Forthcoming productions at the Finborough Theatre include the world premiere of Jane Wainwright's Barrow Hill in August 2012 and the first London revival in over thirty years of Hugh Leonard's A Life in October 2012.

Press night is Thursday, 21 June, 2012, at 7.30PM. Finborough Theatre, The Finborough is located at 118 Finborough Road, London SW10 9ED.

Prices for Weeks One and Two (19 June–1 July 2012) – Tickets £14, £10 concessions, except Tuesday Evenings. £10 all seats, and Saturday evenings £14 all seats. Previews (19 and 20 June) £9 all seats. £6 tickets for Under 30’s for performances from Tuesday to Sunday of the first week when booked online only. £10 tickets for residents of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea on Saturday, 23 June 2012 when booked online. Prices for Weeks Three and Four (3–14 July 2012) – Tickets £16, £12 concessions, except Tuesday Evenings. £12 all seats, and Saturday evenings £16 all seats.

Call the box office at 0844 847 1652 or book online at

The show runs Tuesday, 19 June – Saturday, 14 July 2012 with a schedule of Tuesday to Saturday Evenings at 7.30pm. Saturday matinees at 3.00pm (from 30 June 2012). Sunday Matinees at 3.00pm. STAGETEXT captioned performance for the deaf and hard of hearing – Saturday, 7 July 2012 at 3.00pm Performance Length: Approximately two hours with one interval of fifteen minutes.

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