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The Breadwinner

  • Post-Show Discussions Post-Show Discussions
  • Audio-described Performances Audio-Described Performances
    This event took place on 17 April - 18 May 2013
    Written by Somerset Maugham
    Directed by Auriol Smith
    Designer Sam Dowson
    Lighting Designer John Harris
    For standing tickets and possible returns call the Box Office on 020 8940 3633
    “The Orange Tree has long had the happy knack of dusting down almost forgotten plays from the past and proving that they still have something to say to us now. Somerset Maugham’s The Breadwinner, first staged in 1930, proves a particularly piquant rediscovery.” Charles Spencer, The Telegraph
    Read the full review
    "Fantasies of flight fuelled the life and work of Somerset Maugham. They are also the governing theme of this compellingly cruel 1930 comedy, which forms a fascinating companion piece to previous plays by Githa Sowerby and GB Stern in the Orange Tree season." Michael Billington, The Guardian 
    "Auriol Smith’s polished production does justice to an enjoyable and deceptively provocative play, with plenty to say today." Tom Wicker, Time Out
    “An enjoyable, illuminating and prescient evening” 
    Sarah Hemming, Financial Times
    “So enjoyable and well-preserved is this Maugham revival that you wonder why The Breadwinner is produced so rarely.” The Stage
    "the Orange Tree carries on its splendid work of joining the gaps in our theatrical knowledge through its intriguing season of revivals of plays about earning a wage."
    Fiona Mountford, Evening Standard 
    “Romping its way through questions of love, beauty and the economic situation... A prescient and alarmingly topical comedy from Somerset Maugham” The Arts Desk
    As the young people play tennis and speculate on what their parents may provide for them in the way of flats, cars and allowances, Charles Battle is having a bit of trouble at the Stock Exchange. What happens and how he reacts will have a life-changing effect on both friends and family.

    A delightful and apt comedy by one of Britain’s most popular twentieth century writers, who once outsold all his brilliant contemporaries, including Joseph Conrad and Robert Louis Stevenson. Before the age of 30, he had four plays on in the West End at the same time.

    Running time: approximately 2hrs 30mins, including 2 intervals

    The Life and Work of Somerset Maugham
    Sat 4 May 10.30am

    Find out more about the author of The Breadwinner, including readings from his plays.
    Click here for more details

    Production photos by Robert Day

    Matinees with post-show discussions

    Thu 18 April 2.30
    Thu 25 April 2.30
    Thu 2 May 2.30
    Tue 7 May 2.30

    Audio-described performances

    Tue 7 May 7.45
    Sat 11 May 3.00

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