Four new short plays inspired by the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta by internationally renowned playwrights Howard Brenton, Anders Lustgarten, Timberlake Wertenbaker and Sally Woodcock. RANSOMED by Howard Brenton In the sleepy Cathedral City of Melchester, a crime has been committed. The Cathedral's prize possession, a copy of the original Magna Carta, has been stolen in a daring heist. Who is responsible and what price will the British Government be prepared to pay for the document's safe return? As the plot thickens, Detective Inspector Ellie Baxter seeks to find the truth in this brilliant new Magna Carta comedy. KINGMAKERS by Anders Lustgarten Ten years after the signing of Magna Carta, the barons' takeover isn't quite going to plan. With the peasants grumbling about enormous castles and broken promises, the threat of rebellion hangs in the air. Perhaps the solution is to distract and deflect by bringing the confused and humbled king back into the fold? What about a royal wedding? A royal baby? All at the common man's expense, of course...A fictional story from the 13th century that may just be about now.W
E SELL RIGHT by Timberlake Wertenbaker In 1215, when the King of England abuses his extraordinary power, the barons' take action. In 2015, when the kings of global business and finance abuse their extraordinary power, who will take action and what will confrontation look like? In the decades that follow, what will remain of the values we hold most dear? A gripping drama about the consequences of confronting power on a global scale. PINK GIN by Sally Woodcock In 21st century Africa, a visionary President stands on the cusp of greatness. With international investors poised to develop large tracks of land, the financial future looks bright. But why has it been raining for 97 days, and who is leading the angry mob in the streets outside? A compelling contemporary allegory throwing light on the oft overlooked companion to Magna Carta, The Charter of the Forest.
Howard Brenton's early plays were produced at the Royal Court, RSC and National Theatre, where Romans in Britain (1980) was famously prosecuted by Mary Whitehouse. More recently he became the lead writer on TV's Spooks, before a triumphant return to the stage with Paul (2005) and Never So Good (2008) at the National Theatre and In Extremis (2006) and Anne Boleyn (2010) at Shakespeare's Globe. Anders Lustgarten won the inaugural Harold Pinter Playwright's Award for If You Don't Let Us Dream We Won't Let You Sleep at the Royal Court Theatre Downstairs. He is currently under commission to the Royal Court and the National Theatre among several others, and is also adapting David Peace's The Damned United for a national stage tour. His newest plays, Shrapnel at the Arcola Theatre and Lampedusa at the Soho Theatre, opened in March and April 2015. Anders is also developing original projects for television and radio. (He's also a long-standing political activist who's been arrested in four continents.) Timberlake Wertenbaker is working on new commissions for the Royal Shakespeare Company, Bolton Octagon and Salisbury Playhouse. Our Country's Good will be produced at the National Theatre in 2015, directed by Nadia Fall. Sally Woodcock's first full length play Fanta Orange was nominated for Best New Play at the OffWestEnd awards and longlisted for Time Out's Best New Play 2011 Award. Sally was brought up in Asia and Africa now divides her time between Kenya and the UK. She holds an MA in Text and Performance from RADA / KCL and an MPHIL from Cambridge University in Art, Culture and Education and has participated in the Royal Court Invitation Group for new writers.