Make a Donation!

The Children (2019)

“Retired people are like nuclear power stations. We like to live by the sea.”

Jan 26th to Feb 2nd 2019

Written by Lucy Kirkwood

Directed by Brian Emeney

“Retired people are like nuclear power stations. We like to live by the sea.”

Hazel and Robin, two retired nuclear scientists live in a cottage on the English coast and seek to preserve some semblance of normality in the wake of a disaster at a local power station. They still listen to Radio 4, dance to James Brown, practise yoga and keep in touch with the family. But when Rose, a fellow nuclear scientist they haven’t seen for 38 years suddenly turns up, their precariously ordered existence is disrupted. Has Rose come to reignite her old affair with Robin or does she have some darker purpose? As the old friends share a bottle of wine and reflect on the choices they have made in their lives, disturbing questions are raised.




This award winning play used an intimate domestic setting to raise big issues; in particular how people in the future will react to the poisoned legacy of the present.




Press Quotes:


“A far-reaching, unsettling play about legacy, survival and responsibility ... deceptively lightly written and often tartly funny ... ”The Guardian


“... the play has a pressing, provocative question at its heart – about the responsibility of the older generation towards the younger... [this] is Fukushima meets The Archers, and it's marvellous.” The Daily Telegraph




Ron Cook, our Patron who created the role of Robin when it was first staged in 2016 at The Royal Court Theatre writes:


“[I am reminded] of how much I owe to the Criterion and Geoff Bennett for helping me to fall in love with theatre. The production of ‘The Children’ transferred the production to Broadway in November 2017 where we ran for a limited season of four months at the Samuel J Friedman Theatre. It was hugely successful and received two Tony nominations. One for best new play and Deborah Findlay for best featured actress in a play.”




There was smoking on stage under The Smoke-free (Exemptions and Vehicles) Regulations 2007.




This amateur production of 'The Children' was presented by arrangement with Nick Hern Books.