Late Company

by Jordan Tannahill

25 April – 20 May 2017

“When you wake up in a cold sweat at night and you think someone is watching you, well it’s me. I’m watching you. And that cold sweat on your body, those are my tears…”

The European premiere

One year after the suicide of their teenage son, Debora and Michael sit down to dinner with their son’s bully and his parents.

Closure is on the menu, but accusations are the main course as good intentions are gradually stripped away to reveal layers of parental, sexual, and political hypocrisy – at a dinner party where grief is the loudest guest.

Written with sensitivity and humour, Late Company explores restorative justice, cyber bullying, and is both a timely and timeless meditation on a parent’s struggle to comprehend the monstrous and unknown in their child.

About The Playwright Jordan Tannahill

Playwright Jordan Tannahill has been described as “the future of Canadian theatre” by NOW Magazine. His plays have been presented at theatres across Canada and the US including the National Arts Centre and the Canadian Stage. His films have been exhibited internationally at festivals and galleries including the Toronto International Film Festival, the Art Gallery of Ontario, and the British Film Institute. Jordan's plays have been honoured with various prizes including the 2014 Governor General’s Award for Drama for his book Age of Minority: Three Solo Plays, the 2014 John Hirsch Prize for directing, and Dora Awards for Outstanding New Play for rihannaboi95 in 2013 and Concord Floral in 2015. Concord Floral also received the 2015 Carol Bolt Award and was shortlisted for the 2016 Governor General's Award for Drama. In 2016 Botticelli in the Fire, and Sunday in Sodom won the Toronto Theatre Critics Award for Best New Play and its production at Canadian Stage received the Dora Award for Outstanding Production. He is currently working on a film adaptation of Botticelli in the Fire with filmmaker Stephen Dunn. His book Theatre of the Unimpressed: In Search of Vital Drama, published by Coach House Press in 2015, was called “essential reading for anyone interested in the state of contemporary theatre and performance” by The Globe and Mail. It is currently on the curriculum of several North American universities. Jordan is currently working on new projects with the National Theatre in the UK, and the National Film Board of Canada, and the Stratford Festival in Canada.

About The Director Michael Yale

Director Michael Yale’s recent production of This Little Life of Mine at Park Theatre was multi-award-nominated at this year’s Broadway World and OffWestEnd Awards including for Best Direction and Best New Musical. Direction includes Henry IV: Part One (Rose Playhouse, Bankside, and St. James Theatre), Thrice Ninth Kingdom (Soho Theatre and Tristan Bates Theatre), Maternity (Riverside Studios), The Disappeared (Theatre503), Wicked Will (BAC and National Tour) and Hell’s Kitchen (Midlands Art Centre). Late Company is the fourth Canadian play that Michael has given the European premiere: he previously directed the award-winning Monsieur D’Eon (Union Theatre) and produced A Woman’s Comedy (Wimbledon Theatre) and Mrs Ruskin (Warehouse Theatre, Croydon). Michael trained at London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, and continues to act and write for theatre and television.

About Stage Traffic

Stage Traffic is a dynamic new UK/US theatre production company. Based in London, but looking at inspiration from around the globe, it is committed to creating productions with a strong emphasis on contemporary storytelling that truly resonate with modern audiences. Stage Traffic Productions was founded by producer Eilene Davidson. She has worked as an Associate Producer on several plays in both the USA and London with recent and forthcoming projects for 2017 including Speech and Debate (Trafalgar Studios), Significant Other (Booth Theatre, New York) and War Paint (Nederlander Theater, New York). She is currently on the board at the award winning Huntington Theatre in Boston

The Press on Previous Productions of Late Company

★★★★★ “Tannahill’s subtle writing examines divergent approaches to parenthood without condemning anyone, as well as the challenges of childrearing in the 21st century.” Now Magazine

★★★★★ “Late Company is first rate theatre, searing but holding out a touch of hope.” Now Magazine

★★★★★ Jordan Tannahill’s searing, unforgettable drama. There are no easy answers to be found here, only the shattered realities of two families struggling tp put a terrible ordeal in the past.” Torontoist

“A powerfully polarizing script. There is humour and heartbreak in equal parts…” 10/10 The Grid

“Excruciatingly good theatre: it feels like open heart surgery” Vancouver Courier

“It deals deftly with its themes of forgiveness, retribution and accountability.” CBC News

“The compelling script is a feast for those who like their drama taut and provocative.” CBC News

The Press on Playwright Jordan Tannahill

“The future of Canadian theatre” Now Magazine

“The hottest name in Canadian theatre” Montreal Gazette

“The posterchild of a new generation for whom ’interdisciplinary’ is not a buzzword but a way of life” The Globe and Mail

The Press on Stage Traffic's Production of This Little Life of Mine

★★★★★ “An absolute delight” Broadway World

★★★★ “Yale’s direction…produces a lovely flow of energy…excellent …resonates on so many levels” LiveTheatreUK

★★★★ “Michael Yale’s production is sensitive and full of ideas…beautifully unfolded in one big tragedy. ” LDN Culture

★★★★ “Rude, romantic and real” The Reviews Hub

The Press on Late Company

★★★★★ London Theatre 1
★★★★★ Carn’s Theatre Passion
★★★★★ London-Olios
★★★★★ Last Minute Theatre Tickets
★★★★ The Times
★★★★ The Independent
★★★★ WhatsOnStage
★★★★ The Stage
★★★★ Time Out
★★★★ Broadway World
★★★★ Rewrite This Story
★★★★ Radio Times
★★★★ Johnny Fox: Critical Mass
★★★★ Jonathan Baz Reviews
★★★★ West End Wilma

“The Finborough has such a long record of punching far above its weight in the presentation of high-quality work that we are always in danger of taking its excellence for granted. But once again we are indebted to this tiny fringe venue for introducing us to an important new writer and for providing a home for an engrossing evening's theatre.” Gerald Berkowitz, TheatreGuideLondon

“The dinner party from hell serves up full gamut of human emotions. A TERRIFIC PLAY. GO! This one deserves a West End transfer.” Ann Treneman, The Times

“Genuinely powerful. A show that serves up plenty of food for thought.” Holly Williams, WhatsOnStage

“A work of great subtlety and power. An engrossing evening’s theatre.” Gerald Berkowitz, Theatreguide.London

“Tannahill’s tightly wound play hums with convincing characters, charged exchanges and elegantly woven-in-arguments about parenting, tolerance, mental health, class, the effect of modern technology… I could go on.” Holly Williams, WhatsOnStage

“Superbly crafted. A gripping study about grief, guilt and the impossibility of parenthood.” Fergus Morgan, The Stage

“A gripping, powerful and devastating critique of societal and parental hypocrisy in the digital age. Compelling and beautifully acted.” Claire Webb, Radio Times

“A brilliant, well-written, intelligent play.” George Althaus, London-Olios

“A thought-provoking and powerful play.” Cora May, On in London

“A powerful piece of writing.” Peter Yates, London Theatre 1

“One of the most moving and well executed plays I’ve seen. More relevant now than ever.” Olivia Mitchell, Rewrite This Story

“One of the most poignant and finely executed plays I’ve seen all year.” Lauren Merin, Carn’s Theatre Passion

“A gripping production that should not be missed.” Carolin Kopplin, UK Theatre Network

“An edgy, dense, superbly constructed piece of theatre that keeps its audience on the edge of their seats.” Alan Fitter, Last Minute Theatre Tickets

“Powerful new drama about the devastating aftershocks of cyber bullying. SUPERB.” Tom Wicker, Time Out

“Late Company weighs heavily on your mind in the days following the performance. This is theatre in its purest form.” Joe Vesey-Byrne, The Independent

“A thoughtful approach to a complicated topic, bolstered by a skillfully written script and exceptional performances.” Francesca Street, Exeunt Magazine

“Late Company makes for compelling, essential drama.” Jonathan Baz, Jonathan Baz Reviews

“Excellent cast. The ensemble is so of-a-piece that it is impossible to single out anyone for special praise.” Gerald Berkowitz, Theatreguide.London

“Five impressively understated performances.” Fergus Morgan, The Stage

“The small cast of five are all equally outstanding. The entire company manages to bring the issues forward in a stunning way.” Olivia Mitchell, Rewrite This Story

“An outstanding cast.” Carolin Kopplin, UK Theatre Network

“Five outstanding performances.” Francesca Street, Exeunt Magazine

“I have never experienced a gamut of emotions like this portrayed by any cast of actors.” George Althaus, London-Olios

“Scintillating cast.  The performances are right on the money throughout the show.” Peter Yates, London Theatre 1

“Todd Boyce and Lucy are outstanding as Joel’s upper-class parents. Alex Lowe and Lisa Stevenson are equally superb as the ‘average Joe’ and ‘slightly liberal’ parents of a bully. However, their performances were almost upstaged by David Leopold, who plays Curtis Dermot. His teenage portrayal: an emotional mixture of withdrawal, disengagement, innocence, confusion, anger, and finally, sorrow—was very powerful.” Lauren Merin, Carn’s Theatre Passion

“Lucy Robinson and Lisa Stevenson are a joy to watch.” Cindy Marcolina, Broadway World

“All the acting is good but Lucy Robinson as Debra and Lisa Stevenson as Tamara are exceptional.” Ann Treneman, The Times

“Robinson is the fearsome centre of the play, both wounded and wounding, but she's matched by great work from David Leopold as Curtis, a nuanced portrayal of what might drive someone to become a bully.” Ian Foster, There Ought To Be Clowns

“There is not a shred of melodrama in Robinson's work, simply a performance of carefully crafted grief and emotion that has to rank amongst the finest in London. Stunning work too from David Leopold's Curtis.” Jonathan Baz, Jonathan Baz Reviews

“As Deborah, Lucy Robinson howls in anguish, and David Leopold convincingly captures Curtis’s painfully teenage confusion, guilt and helplessness.” Tom Wicker, Time Out

“The performance by Lucy Robinson, crucial to the success of the work, reduced many in the audience to tears. David Leopold played a frequently silent role excellently.” Joe Vesey-Byrne, The Independent

“David Leopold is marvelous.” Holly Williams, WhatsOnStage

“All the performances are superb. David Leopold, who plays Curtis, captures the awkwardness of adolescence beautifully.” Claire Webb, Radio Times

“Guilt and internal teenage distress are portrayed flawlessly by Leopold.” Cindy Marcolina, Broadway World

“Leopold is totally convincing.” Alice Josephs, Traffic Light TheatreGoer

“Lisa Stevenson is remarkable.” Holly Williams, WhatsOnStage

“Todd Boyce and Alex Lowe are as crucial as their female counterparts, personifying two different versions of fatherhood.” Cindy Marcolina, Broadway World

“Michael Yale directs with perfect pace.” Ann Treneman, The Times

“Director Michael Yale shows himself a particularly astute reader and interpreter.” Gerald Berkowitz, Theatreguide.London

“Director Michael Yale certainly gets the most out of his cast in this superbly written play.” George Althaus, London-Olios

“Yale’s clear, precise and sympathetic handling of Tannahill’s script ensures that here there is a piece of theatre in it’s purest form – direct, engaging, intelligent and relevant to our rapidly changing world.” Peter Yates, London Theatre 1

“Michael Yale's sensitive production about grief, forgiveness and reconciliation is almost painful to watch as two families are trying to find closure after a terrible tragedy.” Carolin Kopplin, UK Theatre Network 
“Director Michael Yale’s well-acted production cranks up the tension, while delving into welcome pockets of black humour.” Tom Wicker, Time Out

“Yale's direction draws us right up alongside the dinner table and into Tannahill's inquisitive and interesting plotting which has a great deal to say.” Ian Foster, There Ought To Be Clowns

“Michael Yale directs his company with an incisive sensitivity.” Jonathan Baz, Jonathan Baz Reviews

25 April – 20 May 2017

Tickets and Times

Tuesday 7:30pm
Wednesday 7:30pm
Thursday 7:30pm
Friday 7:30pm
Saturday 3:00pm
7:30pm
Sunday 3:00pm

Approximately 70 minutes with no interval