Winter Season | November 2016 - February 2017


by Rodney Ackland

Tuesday, 22 November – Thursday, 22 December 2016

The first Central London production in 80 years

After October is now completely sold out for the entire run.

For details of our Returns Policy, please click here.

For details of any other additional performances, any last minute ticket releases and to join our mailing list, please email us at or follow us onTwitter and Facebook.

★★★★ Evening Standard
★★★★ The Independent
★★★★ The Sunday Telegraph
★★★★ Time Out
★★★★ The Reviewsgate

OffWestEnd nomination for Best Female Performance in a Supporting Role –
Sasha Waddell as Rhoda in After October
OffWestEnd nomination for Best Costume Designer –
Anna Lewis for Costume in After October
OffWestEnd nomination for Best Male Performance -
Adam Buchanan as Clive in After October

“Listen: things will be different after the play comes on – completely different… Only a few more weeks, Francie, and you’ll see. Your whole life will change. I promise you it will. ”

The first Central London production in eighty years of Rodney Ackland’s After October opens at the Finborough Theatre for a limited four and a half week season on Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Hampstead, 1936. In a shabby basement flat, aspiring playwright Clive Monkhams dreams of a West End hit and winning Francie’s heart. His bankrupt mother Rhoda, a faded actress, frets about the bills and the fortunes of her penniless daughters while reminiscing about her glory days. Clive’s family and an entourage of bohemian dependants all need him to make it big. With opening night approaching and finances fast running out, everything rides on the success of the play and, for Clive, the future looks all too glittering…

From the acclaimed writer of Absolute Hell and Before the Party, After October is Rodney Ackland’s most autobiographical play, both a bittersweet homage to the theatre and a fascinating portrait of an impoverished family on the brink of a glamorous new life. This rediscovery marks the first Central London production since its premiere in 1936.


Playwright Rodney Ackland (1908-1991) was 21 when his first play Improper People was produced at the Arts Theatre Club in 1929. He became a leading West End playwright just three years later when John Gielgud transferred Strange Orchestra to the West End. He went on to many other West End successes, but his work fell into virtual obscurity for three decades until The Dark River (1943) was revived at the Orange Tree Theatre, Richmond, in 1984. The Spectator called it “perhaps the one indisputably great play of the past half-century in English.” Other revivals followed, most notably Absolute Hell (1952) which ran to huge critical acclaim at the Orange Tree Theatre, the National Theatre and on BBC Television starring Judi Dench. His other plays include Smithereens (1934), The Old Ladies (1935), Before the Party (1949) and A Dead Secret (1957). His screenplays include Bank Holiday (1938), 49th Parallel (1941) for which he was nominated for an Oscar, Thursday’s Child (1943) and The Queen of Spades (1949).


Director Oscar Toeman returns to the Finborough Theatre where he directed the sell-out production of J. B. Priestley’s Laburnum Grove in 2013 and Hey Brother for Vibrant 2011 – A Festival of Finborough Playwrights; and was Resident Assistant Director where he assisted on Accolade and Mirror Teeth. Trained at St. Catharine’s College, Cambridge, and through the Young Vic Directors Programme. Theatre includes Measure for Measure (North Wall Arts Centre, Oxford), Richard III (Stanwix Theatre, Cumbria), What They Took With Them (Moving Stories, United Nations Refugee Agency fundraiser at the National Theatre), Why I Want to Work at Tesco’s (Bush Theatre), A.G.M (Nabokov at Soho Theatre), The Ballad of the Copper Revolution (Nabokov at The Old Vic Tunnels) and The Stanhope Sisters (The Red Hedgehog and The Egg, Theatre Royal Bath). Associate and Assistant Direction includes Waste, directed by Roger Michell (National Theatre), The Merchant of Venice, directed by Polly Findlay (Royal Shakespeare Company), Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, directed by Adrian Noble (Theatre Royal Bath), Twelfth Night, directed by Tim Carroll (Shakespeare’s Globe and Apollo Theatre), Uncle Vanya, directed by Lucy Bailey (The Print Room) and Skane, directed by Tim Carroll (Hampstead Theatre). He was long listed for the JMK Award in 2014 and 2015, a National Theatre Staff Director in 2015, and Interim Resident Director at the National Theatre Studio in 2016.


Jasmine Blackborow | Frances Dent

Trained at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.
Theatre includes Grey Man (Theatre503), Hood: The Legend Continues (Theatre Royal, Nottingham), Now This Is Not The End (Arcola Theatre) and Dracula (New Vic Theatre, Newcastle-under-Lyme).
Film includes The Door, Arcadia, The Swallow and Lady Macbeth.

Adam Buchanan | Clive Monkhams

Trained at Guildford School of Acting.
Theatre includes Talent and Diana of Dobson’s (New Vic Theatre, Newcastle-under-Lyme), Pride and Prejudice (Crucible Theatre, Sheffield), Elephants and The Mystae (Hampstead Theatre), First Episode (Jermyn Street Theatre), The Butterfly Lion (Mercury Theatre, Colchester, and National Tour) and As You Like It (Guildford Shakespeare Company).
Television includes Our World War and Waking the Dead.

Andrew Cazanave Pin | Armand St. René

Trained at Arts Educational Schools London.
This is his professional stage debut.

Peta Cornish | Lou St. René

Trained at Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.
Theatre includes Play/Silence (The Other Room, Cardiff), Future Conditional (The Old Vic), Fever (Jermyn Street Theatre), To Sir, With Love (Royal and Derngate Theatres, Northampton, and National Tour), The Dug Out (The Tobacco Factory, Bristol), The Welsh Boy (Ustinov Studio, Bath) and The Great Gatsby (King’s Head Theatre).
Film includes Frail and Two Feet.
Television includes William and Mary and Victoria Wood’s Midlife Christmas.

Josie Kidd | Mrs. Batley

Productions at the Finborough Theatre include The White Carnation, and its subsequent transfer to Jermyn Street Theatre, and Gates of Gold and its subsequent transfer to Trafalgar Studios.
Trained at Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.
Theatre includes Fondly Remembered (Tabard Theatre), Dirty Dancing (Aldwych Theatre), Glorious (Duchess Theatre and National Tour), Present Laughter (Aldwych Theatre and Wyndham’s Theatre), Stepping Out (Novello Theatre and National Tour), Emma (Royal and Derngate Theatres, Northampton), Cemetery Club (Coliseum Theatre, Oldham), Ring Round the Moon (King’s Head Theatre), See How They Run and Relative Values (Vienna’s English Theatre), Woman In Mind (Palace Theatre, Watford, and Wilmington, USA), Run For Your Wife and Funny Money (Oriana Theatre Company) and Birds on the Wing (Piccadilly Theatre).
Film includes The First Man, The Library, Wrong Turn 6: Last Resort, Shoot on Sight, Ghosthunter and No Longer Alone. Television includes The Crown, Call the Midwife, Doctors, Starlings, Midsomer Murders, The Invisibles, Catwalk Dogs, Life Begins, Down to Earth, Life Beyond the Box: Norman Stanley Fletcher, Hot Money, Murder in Mind, There’s a Viking in My Bed, Absolutely True, EastEnders, Silent Witness, Goodnight Sweetheart, Soldier Soldier, Castles, The Ruth Rendell Mysteries, Galloping Galaxies, Moon and Son, Kinsey, The Agatha Christie Hour, Who, Sir? Me, Sir?, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, Just William, Harriet’s Back in Town, Peak Practice, Wycliffe, Last of the Summer Wine, Juliet Jekyll and Harriet Hyde, Uncle Jack, London’s Burning, The Pallisers, War and Peace and Nana.
Radio includes The Haunted Hotel and numerous radio dramas for the BBC Radio Drama Company.
Pop Promos include Dream with Dizzee Rascal.

Beverley Klein | Marigold Ivens

Productions at the Finborough Theatre include Cornelius and its subsequent transfer to 59E59 Theaters, New York City, in the Brits Off Broadway season.
Theatre includes Young Chekhov (National Theatre and Chichester Festival Theatre), Deathtrap (Salisbury Playhouse), Into the Woods and Sunday in the Park with George (Théâtre du Châtelet, Paris), Fiddler on the Roof (Savoy Theatre), Romeo and Juliet, The Villains’ Opera, Summerfolk, Candide and Honk! The Ugly Duckling (National Theatre), Sweeney Todd (Opera North at Sadler’s Wells), The Threepenny Opera (Donmar Warehouse), Night After Night and The Woman Who Cooked Her Husband (Royal Court Theatre), Six Characters Looking for an Author (The Young Vic), Restoration (Headlong Theatre), Sarrasine and A Judgement in Stone (Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith), Sixty-Six Books (Bush Theatre), How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying and Six Pictures of Lee Miller (Chichester Festival Theatre), Equally Divided (Palace Theatre, Watford), Wedding Day at the Cro-Magnons (Soho Theatre), Piaf (York Theatre Royal and Coliseum Theatre, Oldham), Bernarda Alba (Union Theatre), Jerry Springer: The Opera (Assembly Rooms, Edinburgh), The Holy Terror (Duke of York’s Theatre) and Happy End and Tatiana (Nottingham Playhouse). Beverley was in the original company of Les Misérables (Royal Shakespeare Company at Barbican Centre and Palace Theatre).
Opera includes Die Fledermaus and HMS Pinafore (Carl Rosa Opera), The Pirates of Penzance (Gielgud Theatre), Into the Woods and The Enchanted Pig (Linbury Studio, Royal Opera House Covent Garden), The Magic Flute (Donmar Warehouse) and Candide (English National Opera at London Coliseum and Bunkamura Orchard Hall, Tokyo).
Film includes Swinging with the Finkels.
Television includes Mr. Selfridge, Ripper Street, Call the Midwife, Doctors, Casualty, Gimme Gimme Gimme, The Hello Girls, Paris, Inspector Morse and Absolutely.
Radio includes Sweeney Todd, Night After Night and Dr. Finlay: Adventures of a Black Bag.
Recordings include Fiddler on the Roof, Candide, The Threepenny Opera and Les Misérables.

Allegra Marland | Joan Monkhams

Trained at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts.
This is her professional stage debut.
Film includes Goodbye Christopher Robin and Sunday Tide.
Television includes Father Brown.

Jonathan Oliver | Alec Mant

Trained at the University of Manchester.
Theatre includes War and Peace (National Theatre), Spiral and Waiting for Godot (Arcola Theatre), The Magic Flute (Palace of Arts, Budapest, Abu Dhabi Festival and Royal Festival Hall), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (L’Auditorium-Orchestre National de Lyon), As You Like It and The Merchant of Venice (Creation Theatre Company), The Odyssey, Boiling Frogs, The Seagull and Hamlet (The Factory), The Spire (Salisbury Playhouse), Duck Variations (The Studio at the Open Air Theatre, Regent’s Park, and King’s Head Theatre), Antony and Cleopatra (Nuffield Theatre, Southampton), Ship of Fools (Theatre503), Moby Dick (Compass Theatre Company), The Venetian Twins (Watermill Theatre, Newbury), The Man Who and Because It’s There (Nottingham Playhouse), Sweet Dreams and As You Like It (Sphinx Theatre Company), Macbeth, Two Noble Kinsmen and The Tempest (Shakespeare’s Globe), and Hamlet (Théâtre Point, Corsica and Festival d’Avignon).
Film includes Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, The Memorialist, La Mort en Direct and Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi.
Television includes Angel of Death: The Beverly Allitt Story, Agincourt, Raffles, the Gentleman Thief, Hannay and King of the Ghetto.
Radio includes The Wolf Man: Freud – The Case Histories, Zazie in the Metro, Bleak House and The Girl at the Lion d’Or.

Patrick Osborne | Oliver Nashwick

Productions at the Finborough Theatre include Pain is Weakness Leaving the Body for Vibrant 2013 – A Festival of Finborough Playwrights and Accolade.
Trained at Guildhall School of Music and Drama.
Theatre includes Noises Off (Nottingham Playhouse, Northern Stage, Newcastle, and Nuffield Theatre, Southampton), Peter Pan (Open Air Theatre, Regent’s Park), Shakespeare in Love (Noel Coward Theatre), The Seagull (Baron’s Court Theatre), The Pearl (Rose Theatre, Kingston) and Clockheart Boy (National Tour).
Film includes Their Finest.
Television includes The Borgias, The Genius of Turner and My Parents Are Aliens.

Stephen Rashbrook | Brian Guest

Trained at Guildhall School of Music and Drama.
Theatre includes Waste, Luther, The Winter’s Tale and Hamlet (National Theatre), The Ratpack Live from Las Vegas (Adelphi Theatre, Savoy Theatre, Strand Theatre and European and American Tour), The Lady in the Van, Jackie: An American Life and Forty Years On (Queen’s Theatre),The Remains of the Day and Sweeney Todd (Union Theatre), Hamlet (Donmar Warehouse and Piccadilly Theatre), Robert and Elizabeth (Chichester Festival Theatre), The Tempest and Much Ado About Nothing (Actors From The London Stage), A Fool and His Money (Nottingham Playhouse and Birmingham Rep), Nicholas Nickleby, Twelfth Night, Peter Pan, Othello, The Merry Wives of Windsor and Julius Caesar (Royal Shakespeare Company).
Television includes The Royals, Hollyoaks, Doctors, New Tricks, Urban Gothic, Dream Team, Holby City, A Touch of Frost, Powers, Earth Warp, ‘Allo ‘Allo, Emmerdale and narration for over 500 documentaries.
Radio includes numerous radio dramas for the BBC Radio Drama Company and BBC World Service.

Sasha Waddell | Rhoda Monkhams

Trained at Drama Studio London.
Theatre includes Nell Gwynn (Shakespeare’s Globe and Apollo Theatre), Richard II (Shakespeare’s Globe), Noises Off (The Old Vic National Tour), The Seagull and Eight Women (Southwark Playhouse), The Village Bike (Royal Court Theatre), Volcano (Vaudeville Theatre), The Mousetrap (St Martin’s Theatre), Yes, Prime Minister and Out of Order (British Theatre Playhouse, Singapore), Duet for One and Donkeys’ Years (Vienna’s English Theatre), Candida (National Tour), The Winter’s Tale (Creation Theatre Company), The Young Idea (Gateway Theatre, Chester), Dear Brutus (King’s Head Theatre), Lady Windermere’s Fan (Chichester Festival Theatre) and Twelfth Night (Royal Shakespeare Company).
Film includes The Honourable Rebel and Ealing Comedy.
Television includes The Royals, Delicious, The Missing, Rev, Doctors, Midsomer Murders, Parade’s End, A Touch of Cloth, Holby City, Julian Fellowes Investigates, Krakatoa, A Lump in My Throat and Diana: A Tribute to the People’s Princess.


“Another splendid revival at the Finborough.” William Russelll, Reviewsgate

“Yet another winning revival from this pub theatre powerhouse… It’s an ebullient production of infectious energy” Fiona Mountford, The Evening Standard

“These revivals of half-forgotten playwrights are gold dust.” Libby Purves, Theatre Cat

“This production is a runaway success, which it owes to a combination of clever staging, a masterly reading of the source text and outstandingly assured performances from each cast member.” James Bell, A Younger Theatre

“Written in 1936 and not staged in Central London since then, this revival at the Finborough directed by Oscar Toeman makes a splendid addition to its record of rediscovering almost forgotten plays.” William Russell, Reviewsgate

“An enjoyable confection.” Philip Fisher, British Theatre Guide

“Warm and affectionate, this does great justice to an under-sung figure of British theatre.” Matt Breen, Time Out

“After October is a play that defies you to give it a bad review.” Ben Lawrence, The Sunday Telegraph

“There is a comic exuberance and a conviction that make this an enjoyable and often profoundly moving evening – proof that this small, impoverished theatre can punch well above its weight.” Ben Lawrence, The Sunday Telegraph

“Full of energy and utterly absorbing, it’s a tender tribute to the world of theatre.” Jamie Bolton-Debbage, West London Living

“Some glorious lines to treasure.” William Russell, Reviewsgate

“It is a mystery why this play has not seen the light of day in London - 80 years is too long, but better late than never.” Emma Henderson, The Independent

“These well-made, entertaining, perceptive plays from the pre-John-Osborne era need reviving…The heroes of this archaeology [is]…this theatre: the tiny, determined, ingenious and always classy Finborough.” Libby Purves, Theatre Cat

“Ackland is such an appealing writer, with much to say about the foibles and frailties of the human heart, that the absence of his work from our stages continues to mystify.” Fiona Mountford, The Evening Standard

“A glorious, rambunctious revival of Rodney Ackland's semi-autobiographical, bitter sweet comedy a sharply observed, witty script with some great characters, and it's very funny.” Penny Flood, Hammersmith Today

“The cast utter Ackland's ripe dialogue with relish.” Ben Lawrence, The Sunday Telegraph

“There’s an ensemble of strong performances, confidently led by Buchanan.” Fiona Mountford, The Evening Standard

“A strong cast ensure that Ackland’s play hasn’t lost its heft.” Matt Breen, Time Out

“Adam Buchanan captures exactly the bruised sensibility of the writer-hero.” Michael Billington, The Guardian

“Boyishly intense Adam Buchanan.” Alice Josephs, Traffic Light Theatre Goer

“Great comic delivery from Adam Buchanan’s Clive.” Jamie Bolton-Debbage, West London Living

“Strong support from Sasha Waddell as his adoring mother, Patrick Osborne as the scrounging poet and Beverley Klein as an eccentric, would-be thesp who was a big hit with Buxton amateurs.” Michael Billington, The Guardian

“Kingpin of the play, though, is Ackland’s quite marvellous creation of Rhoda, the mother, given vivid life by Sasha Waddell.” Libby Purves, Theatre Cat

“Matriarch Rhoda is played with winsome girlishness and an unexpectedly shrewd core by Sasha Waddell.” Philip Fisher, British Theatre Guide

“Sasha Waddell as his mother Rhoda, a moderately successful but now forgotten actor, brings a combination of sparkling wit, easy charm and nervous vulnerability which elevates what could have been a flatly comic character to something altogether deeper and more engaging.” James Bell, A Younger Theatre

“Beautifully played by Beverley Klein.” William Russell, Reviewsgate

“Beverley Klein is hilarious as the eccentric Marigold Ivens.” Carolin Kopplin, UK Theatre Network

“Klein offering something brilliantly bonkers.” Ben Lawrence, The Sunday Telegraph

“Josie Kidd in a finely tuned understated performance.” Alice Josephs, Traffic Light Theatre Goer

“Josie Kidd is a treasure.” Philip Fisher, British Theatre Guide

“A marvellous Josie Kidd.” Penny Flood, Hammersmith Today

“Blackborow giving an acutely sensitive portrayal of someone suffering from a past (unspecified) emotional trauma.” Ben Lawrence, The Sunday Telegraph

“Allegra Marland is a natural at 1930s breeziness.” Philip Fisher, British Theatre Guide

“Patrick Osborne is comically ghastly.” Sam Marlowe, The Times

“Fluently directed by Oscar Toeman.” Alice Josephs, Traffic Light Theatre Goer

“Oscar Toeman’s production culminates in a whirl of manic energy.” Philip Fisher, British Theatre Guide

“Director Oscar Toeman has made the smart decision to seat us in the thick of the action, on benches around the edge of the living room.” Fiona Mountford, The Evening Standard

“Toeman’s production is engaging and fast-paced.” Emma Henderson, The Independent

“A buoyant production by Oscar Toeman.” Sam Marlowe, The Times

“Oscar Toeman’s production draws the audience into the heart of the family’s hectic comings and goings.” Jamie Bolton-Debbage, West London Living

“The snug Finborough space is transformed cleverly by designer Rosanna Vize into a light and airy Hampstead living room.” Alice Josephs, Traffic Light Theatre Goer


On Flowering Cherry by Robert Bolt:

“Exquisite revival of a Fifties jewel... A wonderful evening’s theatre.” ★★★★ Evening Standard

“As relevant to the midlife dreamers among us still as to those of sixty years ago.” ★★★★ Libby Purves

“Taut, meticulous and arrestingly acted.” Sam Marlowe, The Times

On The White Carnation by R. C. Sherriff:

“A neglected little” ★★★★ Dominic Cavendish, The Telegraph

“It is a treat to see the piece given such a fine production." ★★★★ Daisy Bowie-Sell, Time Out

“This intriguing and strongly acted revival.” Paul Taylor, The Independent


“Rodney Ackland is a dramatist with a genuine gift.” W. A. Darlington, The Telegraph

“Mr. Ackland knows the ripple of this kind of life, its mixture of telephone and tattle, its hysterical hopes, its bitter but brief disenchantments.” Ivor Brown, The Observer

“Its dialogue and action have that natural flexibility which makes reference to Chekhov inevitable.” The Times

“Shows a shrewd knowledge of character and the dialogue a shrewd sense of the stage. It reflects a mind sharpened to the best type of sophistication.” Evening Standard


Tuesday, 22 November – Thursday, 22 December 2016

Tuesday to Saturday Evenings at 7.30pm.
Sunday Matinees at 3.00pm.
Saturday Matinees 3.00pm (from 3 December 2016).

Performance Length: Approximately 2 hours 45 minutes with one interval of 15 minutes.

Until 4 December 2016

Tickets £16, £14 concessions

except Tuesday Evenings £14 all seats, and Friday and Saturday evenings £16 all seats.
Previews (22 and 23 November) £12 all seats.

£10 tickets for Under 30's for performances from Tuesday to Sunday of the first week when booked online only.

£12 tickets for residents of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea on Saturday, 26 November 2016 when booked online only.

From 6 December 2016

Tickets £18, £16 concessions

except Tuesday Evenings £16 all seats, and Friday and Saturday evenings £18 all seats. 

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


Directed by Oscar Toeman

Set Design by Rosanna Vize

Lighting by Marec Joyce

Costume Design by Anna Lewis

Sound Design by Lucinda Mason Brown

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