Abigail's Party

by  Mike Leigh

Full Length Play, Dramatic Comedy  /  2m, 3f

British suburbanites Laurence and Beverly are entertaining their new neighbors, Angela and Tony as well as Susan, whose teenage daughter, Abigail is having a party to which Susan has been dis-invited. Over drinks and snacks, cliches and fatuous small talk abound.

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Abigail's Party

by  Mike Leigh

License Estimator

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    2m, 3f
  • Duration

    Duration

    90 minutes
  • Suggested Use

    Suggested Use

    • Scene work
    • Competition or audition material

Additional Info

British suburbanites Laurence and Beverly are entertaining their new neighbors, Angela and Tony as well as Susan, whose teenage daughter, Abigail is having a party to which Susan has been dis-invited. Over drinks and snacks, cliches and fatuous small talk abound. The tension escalates as the marital strain between Beverly and Laurence surfaces. Susan's anxiety over Abigail's party accelerates as rock music and God-knows-what permeate the room. As Beverly and Angela offer some supremely tactless remarks, reality breaks through the smugness when Laurence collapses with a fatal heart attack.
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Accolades

  • Named among the "10 most influential postwar British plays" by Guardian UK!
    Winner! 2013 Whatsonstage.com Award, Best Play Revival

Reviews

REVIEWS

"A brutally accurate portrait of people who link ownership with status and who surround themselves with expensive objects...for which they have no practical use... An almost Strindbergian vision of marital loathing." - Guardian UK 

“Abigail’s Party” may be the most uncomfortable comedy in New York right now, and I’d sit through it again in a second. - Thew New York Times, Read More

Considerations

Performing Groups

  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Dinner Theatre
  • Professional Theatre

Cautions

  • Caution Alcohol Alcohol
  • Caution Strong Language Strong Language
  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $75 per performance

Production

Details

  • Duration: 90 minutes
  • Setting: Laurence and Beverly's house. Early and late evening in spring.

Casting

2m, 3f
BEVERLY
LAURENCE
ANGELA
TONY
SUSAN
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Cast Attributes

  • Ensemble cast

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Authors

Mike Leigh

Mike Leigh trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, at Camberwell and Central Art Schools in London, and at the London Film School. He has written and directed over twenty stage plays. These include Babies Grow Old (1974), Abigail's Party (1977), Ecstasy (1979), Goose-Pimples (1981), Smelling A Rat (1988), Gree ...

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Abigail's Party was first presented at the Hampstead THeatre in London on April 18, 1977. It was directed by the author.

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