Present Laughter

by  Noël Coward

Full Length Play, Comedy  /  5m, 6f

Coward's richly comic play about world-weary dilettante Garry Essendine, published to conincide with the National Theatre's production which opened September 2007.

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Present Laughter

by  Noël Coward

License Estimator

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    5m, 6f
  • Duration

    Duration

    More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre

    Subgenre

    Farce, Period
  • Accolades

    Accolades

    From Broadway, From West End
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult
    • Senior

Additional Info

At the centre of his own universe sits matinee idol Garry Essendine: suave, hedonistic and too old, says his wife, to be having numerous affairs. His line in harmless, infatuated debutantes is largely tolerated but playing closer to home is not. Just before he escapes on tour to Africa the full extent of his misdemeanours is discovered. And all hell breaks loose. Noel Coward's Present Laughter premiered in the early years of the Second World War just as such privileged lives were threatened with fundamental social change. 
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Accolades

  • Nominee! 2017 Tony Award for Best Play Revival

Reviews

REVIEWS

"Sharp, withering and funny." -The New York Times

"Sharpness and wit...in each succeeding act." -New York Post

Considerations

Performing Groups

  • High School/Secondary
  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Dinner Theatre
  • Professional Theatre
  • Large Stage

Cautions

  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

License details

  • Minimum Fee: £69 per performance plus VAT when applicable.


    This title is currently restricted in London, please contact the Licensing Department for further details.

Production

Details

  • Time Period: 1940s / WWII
  • Duration: More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Setting: Garry Essendine's studio in London.
  • Features / Contains: Period Costumes

Casting

5m, 6f
DAPHNE STILLINGTON 
MISS ERIKSON
FRED
MONICA REED
GARRY ESSENDINE
LIZ ESSENDINE
ROLAND MAULE
MORRIS DIXON
HUGO LYPPIATT
JOANNA LYPPIATT
LADY SALTBURN
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Cast Attributes

  • Strong Role for Leading Man (Star Vehicle)
  • Strong Role for Leading Woman (Star Vehicle)

Resources

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Authors

Noël Coward

Sir Noël Peirce Coward (1899-1973) was an English playwright, composer, director, actor and singer, known for his wit, flamboyance, and what Time magazine called "a sense of personal style, a combination of cheek and chic, pose and poise." Born in Teddington, a suburb of London, Mr. Coward attended a dance academy in L ...

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Present Laughter premiered while on European tour in Blackpool in September 1942. It then premiered on Broadway at the Plymouth Theatre in October 1946 under the direction of John C. Wilson.

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