28 April - 28 May


by Tennessee Williams

Directed by Lucy Bailey
Designed by Ruth Sutcliffe
Lighting by Oliver Fenwick
Sound Design by Tim Adnitt
Starring: Joseph Drake, Fiona Glascott and David Sturzaker
In association with Rupert Gavin for Incidental Colman Ltd

To celebrate the 100th anniversary of his birth, we are presenting one of Tennessee Williams' rarely performed plays: Kingdom of Earth. The play takes place in a decrepit farm house on the edge of the Mississippi Delta, a few hours before the valley is due to be flooded.

Everyone has fled the area, except Chicken, a powerful young man of mixed race, who claims he can sit out the flood on the roof top. Lot, his younger half-brother arrives with his new wife Myrtle, ten years his senior, ex-stripper and sometime whore, to claim back his mother's house from Chicken. A sibling rivalry for possession of Myrtle takes place, whilst the flood waters rise and threaten to consume them.

This savage, sexy and comic play has been widely overlooked since its inaugural performance on Broadway in 1968. We hope you can come and discover for yourselves this neglected masterpiece, last performed in London in 1984.

Special events:

  • Polidori Exhibition - an installation of photographic work to accompany the production - click here for more information.
  • A Post-Show Q&A will take place on Thursday 19th May, with the company
  • A Pre-Show Talk on Tennessee Williams will take place from 7pm each Monday, free to ticket holders (2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd May). Dr Cynthia Lawford will give a fascinating insight into the world of the play.  She will look at Williams' multiple versions of the story and the reception of the play by the American public when it was first produced in 1968 and 1975, as well as the social and historical backdrop of the Mississippi Delta.