By Jean Anouilh
Presented by TeatroLatino
Directed by Kristine Landon-Smitho
Translation by Jeremy Sams

‘BANG, BANG, BANG. That’s love for you…”

Fizzing comedy and catastrophe collide in Multi award-winning director Kristine Landon-Smith’s revival of The Orchestra, the neglected classic by celebrated French dramatist Jean Anouilh.

A third-rate orchestra in a French spa town play time worn musical arrangements to an indifferent audience. In between the musical interludes, idle chit chat reveals the power struggles that lurk behind the ensemble’s shiny veneer.

As the overture descends into an intoxicating symphony of piercing jealousy, bizarre gossip and thwarted emotions, the musicians reach an unexpected finale – but the music goes jauntily on…

Post Show Q&A on 5 Feb
Terri Paddock chats to director Kristine Landon-Smith, the cast and special guest Jeremy Sams, who translated Anouilh’s work.
Jeremy Sams is also a theatre director, lyricist and translator of plays and opera libretti as well as a composer, orchestrator and musical director. He’s won a BAFTA for ‘Best Music’ and the 2005 Ivor Novello award for ‘Best Score for a Feature Film’.

29 Jan - 17 Feb 2019

(4pm Sundays)

Press Night: 31 Jan

£16, £13 concessions

Unreserved seating

“Short, sharp drama is given a stylish revival. ”

The Guardian

“Pacy, dark, and diverting take on Anouilh’s under-appreciated farce.”

The Stage

“Few are the productions that leave you wanting more…”

Broadway World

“Kristine Landon-Smith’s production is polished and sharp.”


About Jean Anouilh

Born in 1910 in a small village near Bordeaux, Jean became one of the most popular French dramatists since World War II. His work ranged from high drama to absurdist farce, exploring a unified and ever-deepening view of the human condition. He is best known for his 1944 play Antigone, an adaptation of Sophocles’ classical drama.

Choreography and music are often integrated into his plots ; yet a seriousness and a pessimistic view of life lie beneath his farce and caricature. Anouilh argued that, like all great French literature, his plays had found ways to laugh at misfortune. “Thanks to Molière,” Anouilh said, “the true French theatre is the only one that is not gloomy, in which we laugh like men at war with our misery and our horror. This humour is one of France’s messages to the world.”

Director's Note

Many, many years ago I saw a production of The Orchestra at The Kings Head in Islington. I had never seen anything quite like it: a play set in France just after the war where the musicians between arrangements try to work out who had “collaborated”. Understated yet pricelessly funny, I knew I wanted to direct this classic gem. Ten years ago I did just that and fast forward another ten years and I am drawn again to this quick witted and poignant play in an excellent translation by Jeremy Sams.

The Orchestra | Production Gallery

The Orchestra | Kristine Landon-Smith On Miming

The Orchestra | Director Kristine Landon-Smith

The Orchestra | Trailer


Madame Hortense

Amanda Osbourne


Charlotte Laporte


Sarah Waddell

Suzanna Delicias

Stefania Licari

M. Leon

Pedro Casarin


Luna Dai

M Lebonze

Toph Enany


Jessica Hulme

Production Team


Kristine Landon-Smith

Written By

Jean Anouilh


Sue Mayes


Felix Cross

Assistant Director

Toph Enany

Musical Consultant

Allyson Devenish


Julian Starr


Angus Chisholm


Sue Mayes

Stage Managers

Firdaws Fourcroy and Alasdair Saksena

Production Manager

Dennis Charles

Producing Company


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