Rebecca Lenkiewicz

Plays by Rebecca Lenkiewicz

Her Naked Skin

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

Love is just fear I suppose. Masquerading as a fever. Then you explore each other and suddenly you have licence to become totally pedestrian. And ultimately abusive.

Militancy in the Suffragette Movement is at its height. Thousands of women of all classes serve time in Holloway Prison in their fight to gain the vote. Amongst them is Lady Celia Cain who feels trapped by both the policies of the day and the shackles of a frustrating marriage. Inside, she meets a young seamstress, Eve Douglas, and her life spirals into an erotic but dangerous chaos.

London 1913. A crucial moment when, with emancipation almost in sight, women refuse to let the establishment stand in their way.

Rebecca Lenkiewicz's Her Naked Skin premiered at the National Theatre, London, in July 2008.

The Invisible

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

Imagine a world where the Stephen Lawrence Case and the Hillsborough Disaster never made it to court. Since 2012 the government has made sweeping cuts to the provision of legal aid. In this new reality, in cases from civil law to immigration, the voices of those seeking justice are in danger of never being heard.

The Invisible tells the stories of ordinary people whose access to legal aid has been denied, examining how the cuts are driving ever deeper cracks into the fabric of our society.

The Invisible was commissioned by the Bush Theatre, London, where it premiered in July 2015.

The Night Season

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

I cry in the daytime and in the night season am not silent. Psalm 22

Late at night, shoeless, in the rain, a film actor playing the poet Yeats turns up drunk at his appointed Sligo digs. He is met by the grandmother and they dance together to 'Lili Marlene'. In the morning they are discovered, sharing a blanket, by Patrick and his three daughters. Patrick craves tobacco, whiskey and a date with the local barmaid; the sisters yearn for sensation and escape.

A funny, modern, intoxicated tale of love and loss, The Night Season premiered at the National Theatre, London, in 2004.

The Painter

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

The fashionables? They just want to know if a painting’s hot. Whether it will gain.

Queen Victoria said of Turner, ‘He is quite mad.’ A cockney who spoke his mind, he did not fit into the norm of the artist. Society saw him as a misfit, shocking, controversial. He was a visionary, the father of modern painting. The play examines his relationship to three women in his life.

English painting is dead. It’s dealers making fortunes out of sentimental dross. Cherubs. Dogs.

The Painter by Rebecca Lenkiewicz premiered at the Arcola Theatre, London, in January 2011 in the production which marked the opening of its new premises on Ashwin Street.

Shoreditch Madonna

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

A derelict space. Three urban cowboys. Two jaded bohemians. One woman, alone, in pain. Their lives collide and in an attempt to connect with each other, their conflicts unfold. A modern tale of love and loss set against the underground art world of London's East End.

Shoreditch Madonna premiered at Soho Theatre, London, in July 2005.

The Turn of the Screw  

Faber and Faber
Type: Text

A new adaptation of Henry James’s classic novella adapted for the stage by Rebecca Lenkiewicz. This adaptation was first staged at the Almeida Theatre, London, in January 2013.  

Rebecca Lenkiewicz's The Night Season premiered at the National Theatre in 2004, received the Critics' Circle Most Promising Playwright Award and was nominated for the Charles Wintour Evening Standard Award and the Susan Smith Blackburn Award. Her Naked Skin premiered at the National Theatre in 2008, the first play by a living female playwright to be staged on the Olivier. Other plays include The Painter (Arcola Theatre), The Typist ( Riverside Studios), The Lioness (The Tricycle), That Almost Unnameable Lust, Shoreditch Madonna, Blue Moon over Poplar (Soho Theatre), A Soldier's Tale (Old Vic), Invisible Mountains (National Theatre Education), Faeries (Royal Opera House), Justitia (Peacock Theatre) and adaptations of Ibsen's An Enemy of the People (Arcola and Manhattan Theatre Club, USA) and Ghosts (Arcola). For BBC Radio 4: Fighting For Words, Caravan of Desire, Sarah and Ken (Special Commendation for the Tinniswood Award), Dracula and The Winter House.