Autumn Season | September to November 2013

LEE HARVEY OSWALD A Far Mean Streak of Independence Brought on by Negleck

by Michael Hastings

Sundays, Mondays and Tuesdays 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, 12, 17, 18, 19 and 22 November 2013

The first London production in over 40 years

Most performances are now sold out.
Extra matinee added on Monday, 18 November 2013 at 2.00pm

For details of our Returns Policy for sold out performances, please click here.

“If Lee Harvey Oswald did it, he could not have done it alone. If he did not, he must be the hit of the century. If he was involved and somehow double-crossed, alive today must be persons with the guilt of awful silence.”

A Finborough Theatre commission, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy – with an special additional performance on Friday, 22 November at 12.30pm at the exact time of the assassination.

Dallas, Texas. 12.30pm. Friday, 22 November 1963. President John F. Kennedy is assassinated.

Approximately 70 minutes later, assassin Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested.

48 hours later, Lee Harvey Oswald himself was murdered.

Told through the eyes of Oswald’s wife and mother, coupled with extracts from the Warren Commission’s report, we follow the unsettled drifting life of Lee Harvey Oswald – his loveless marriage to his Russian wife, his challenging relationship with his mother and his pathological hatred of Kennedy’s life and achievements. Oswald had the means, motive and opportunity, but did he even do it? Could a man who never did anything on his own murder a President?

Based on Oswald’s own diary notes and interviews (the subtitle comes from Oswald's diary in his own spelling), Lee Harvey Oswald has been performed from Tokyo to Mexico City to Prague, but never in the United States. Originally commissioned and performed at Hampstead Theatre in 1966 as The Silence of Lee Harvey Oswald as part of their 'Living Theatre' series of documentary drama, this rediscovery is the first London production in over 40 years – and the first UK production since its original premiere, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President Kennedy.


Playwright Michael Hastings (1938–2011) was the winner of two Emmy Awards, two BAFTAs, the Somerset Maugham Award and nominated for an Oscar. His first play – Don’t Destroy Me – was produced when he was just 18 years old at the New Lindsey Theatre Club, Notting Hill, and he went on to become part of the first wave of new playwrights at George Devine’s Royal Court Theatre. He won the Evening Standard Award in 1979 for Gloo Joo, but remains best known for Tom and Viv, his 1984 play about the poet T.S. Eliot and his wife Vivienne Haigh-Wood, first seen at the Royal Court Theatre, adapted into a film in 1994, and recently revived at the Almeida Theatre. He also wrote extensively for television and film including The American, starring Diana Rigg, and The Nightcomers, starring Marlon Brando. He also wrote novels, biographies, and collaborated with the composer Michael Nyman on the libretti for the operas Man and Boy and Love Counts.


Director Alex Thorpe is currently Assistant Director on Shakespeare’s Globe’s production on Henry VI, Parts 1, 2 and 3. Theatre as director includes Metamorphosis (Little Angel Theatre), Newlands by Janice Okoh (Islington Community Theatre and National Theatre Pop-Up Workshop), Relief (Theatre503), Rubbish, Inherited Risk Factors (Eyebrow Productions), One Act Play Festival (Almeida Projects). Assistant Direction includes assisting Dawn Walton on One Monkey Don’t Stop No Show (Tricycle Theatre and Sheffield Theatres), Paul Miller on Democracy (The Old Vic and Sheffield Theatres), Nick Bagnall on Henry VI (Shakespeare’s Globe) and Betrayal (Sheffield Theatres), and Jonathan Munby on Company (Sheffield Theatres). Alex also delivers theatre workshops for organisations include The Old Vic, Almeida Theatre and Little Angel Theatre. Alex will be taking over the artistic leadership of Iso Productions this Autumn.


Designer Katie Lias studied Set and Costume Design at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art before gaining a one-year contract to work as a resident design assistant for the Royal Shakespeare Company. Design assistant work for the Royal Shakespeare Company includes As You Like It, The Drunks, and Arabian Nights. Designs include Address Unknown (Soho Theatre), Shakespeare in a Suitcase: The Tempest (Royal Shakespeare Company on National Tour), The Fred Karno Project (Bristol Old Vic), On the Razzle, Hot Fudge, Ice Cream, Liliom, Way to Heaven, Love and Money, Women, Power and Politics Now (Arts Educational Schools), Much Ado About Nothing (East15), No Expense Spared (Jermyn Street Theatre), Word: Play 3, Coalition (Theatre503), Tinderbox (Site-Specific), The Lower Depths (Barons Court Theatre), The Plague (Lost Theatre), The Day They Banned Christmas (Courtyard Theatre), A Day in the Death of Joe Egg (Brockley Jack Theatre), In The Summerhouse, Penthesilea, Man Equals Man (RADA), and Act of Memory, a film produced by David Pugh and Dafydd Rogers. Costume Designs include deadkidsongs and The Welsh Boy (Ustinov Studio, Bath) and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (Polka Theatre).


Adam Gillen | Lee

Trained at Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.
Theatre includes The Five Wives Of Maurice Pinder (National Theatre), The School for Scandal (Barbican Theatre), The Door Never Closes (Almeida Theatre), For King And Country (National Tour), A Taste Of Honey (Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester), Proper Clever (Liverpool Playhouse), War and Peace (Royal Court Theatre and Latitude Festival), The Good Soul of Szechuan (The Young Vic) and Rough Cuts: The Lion's Mouth (Royal Court Theatre).
Film includes We Are The Freaks, Age Of Heroes, 4,3,2,1 and Hippie Hippie Shake.
Television includes Benidorm, Prisoners Wives, Prisoners Wives 2, Miss Wright (Love Matters), Way To Go and Fresh Meat.

Gemma Lawrence | Marina

Trained at Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.
Theatre includes Children of the Sun (National Theatre), XY: Hopelessly Devoted to You (Theatre503 and Pleasance Edinburgh), The Cherry Orchard (Tobacco Factory and Rose Theatre), Les Liaisons Dangereuses (Redgrave Theatre, Bristol) and Rough Cuts: The Lion's Mouth (Royal Court Theatre).
Film includes Frail and A Bunch of Amateurs.
Television includes Luther, Misfits, 1066, The Bill, Casualty, Waking the Dead and Time of Your Life.

Patrick Poletti | Commission

Productions at the Finborough Theatre include F***king Men (2008) – which subsequently transferred to the King’s Head Theatre, the Arts Theatre and The Lowry, Manchester, The American Clock (2012) and Summer Day's Dream (2013).
Trained at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.
Theatre includes Of Mice and Men and All My Sons (Octagon Theatre, Bolton), A Few Good Men (Theatre Royal Haymarket), Baby Doll (National Theatre and Albery Theatre), On Golden Pond (Theatre by the Lake, Keswick), Broken Glass (Watermill Theatre, Newbury), Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me (UK Tour), A View From The Bridge (Harrogate Theatre and Belgrade Theatre, Coventry) and Earth And Sky (Nuffield Theatre, Southampton).
Film includes Summer Solstice, The Tailor of Panama, Brideshead Revisited, and Knife Edge.
Television includes The Honourable Woman to be released in 2014, Derren Brown: The Guilt Trip, Moonshot, Jonathan Creek Christmas Special, Mind Games and A Wing and a Prayer.
Radio includes Empire Of Liberty, Some Kind of Accident, Other Voices and Poor Pen.

Hilary Tones | Marguerite

Trained at the Central School of Speech and Drama.
Theatre includes Blue Stockings, Pericles, Measure for Measure and Macbeth (Shakespeare's Globe), Thrill of Love (St James Theatre), Swallows and Amazons (West End and National Tour), A Small Family Business (Clwyd Theatr, Cymru), Original Sin (Haymarket Theatre, Basingstoke), Mary Stuart and Shirley Valentine (Derby Playhouse), Absolutely! (Perhaps) (Wyndham's Theatre), The Magistrate and She's in Your Hands (Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester), Twelfth Night (Oxford Stage Company), The Visit (Chichester Festival Theatre), The Fireraisers and Liberation of Skopje (Riverside Studios), Rosencrantz and Guildernstern are Dead (Theatre Skopje, Macedonia), The Three Musketeers (Sheffield Theatres), An Ideal Husband (Lyric Theatre, Belfast), Private View (Theatre Rokoko, Prague), Salt of the Earth and Woyzeck (Hull Truck Theatre) and Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet and Have (Royal Shakespeare Company).
Film includes Volume, Unlawful Killing and The Great Expectation of Robert Carmichael.
Television includes Wire in the Blood, Criminal Justice, Casualty, The Bill, Holby City, Doctors, Judge John Deed, Tenth Kingdom, Body Story, Silent Witness, Persuasion, Coronation Street and Gaudy Night.


Sundays, Mondays and Tuesdays 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, 12, 17, 18, 19 and 22 November 2013

Sunday and Monday evenings at 7.30pm. Tuesday matinees at 2.00pm. Special performance on Friday, 22 November 2013 at 12.20pm

Tickets £14, £10 concessions


Performance Length: Approximately 2hrs including one interval.

Directed by Alex Thorpe

Designed by Katie Lias

Lighting by Tom Cooper

Music by Angus MacRae

Fight Direction by Richard Hay

Casting by Matilda James

Music Supervision by Alex Baranowski

Voice Consultation by Richard Ryder

Presented by Rosie Clark in association with Neil McPherson for the Finborough Theatre.