The Children

by Lucy Kirkwood

“At our time of life, we simply cannot deal with this shit.”

Two retired nuclear scientists in an isolated cottage by the sea as the world around them crumbles.

Together they are going to live forever on yogurt and yoga, until an old friend arrives with a frightening request.

“Do you want to call your children?”


“To let them know your plans.”

Lucy Kirkwood in conversation
Fri 2 Dec, post-show
The playwright talks with Royal Court Associate Director Lucy Morrison.
Free with a ticket to that evening’s performance.

The Children is the recipient of a Berwin Lee New Play Commission.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

'Beautifully written...See it.'

Mail On Sunday | Georgina Brown

★ ★ ★ ★

'Raises profound questions about whether having children sharpens, or diminishes, one’s sense of social responsibility.'

The Guardian | Michael Billington Read full review

★ ★ ★ ★

'Lucy Kirkwood is the most rewarding dramatist of her generation.'

The Independent | Paul Taylor Read full review

★ ★ ★ ★

'A witty, provocative play that raises vital questions about social responsibility.'

The Stage | Natasha Tripney Read full review

★ ★ ★ ★

'It has a pressing, provocative question at its heart – about the responsibility of the older generation towards the young.'

The Telegraph | Dominic Cavendish Read full review

★ ★ ★ ★

'The Children remains tantalisingly hard to define: it is about age, responsibility, and a reckoning, of sorts. It is a love triangle. It is a young playwright writing inquisitively about her parents’ generation. It is very English, somewhat menacing, and often funny.'

Time Out | Andrzej Lukowski Read full review

'It’s very astonishing in such a young playwright that she understands not the old as a demographic, but individuals who are old and I think that’s one of the triumphs of the play.'

BBC Saturday Review | Andrea Rose Read full review

★ ★ ★ ★

'A far-reaching, unsettling play about legacy, survival and responsibility.'

Financial Times | Sarah Hemming Read full review

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Jerwood Theatre Downstairs

Mon – Sat: 7.30pm
Thu & Sat mats: 2.30pm (from 26 Nov)
Running Time:
 1 h 50 mins
Age Guidance: 14+


The Company


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