All-female War Drama – “Square Rounds” from Tony Harrison


Proud Haddock, in association with the Finborough Theatre, present Tony Harrison’s all-female war drama 

“Square Rounds”

Finborough Theatre, 118 Finborough Road, London SW10 9ED

4th September – 29th September 2018

This autumn, Proud Haddock will bring Tony Harrison’s lyrical play Square Rounds to the Finborough Theatre for its first UK production in nearly 30 years since its rediscovery. This all-female ensemble cast will star Gracy Goldman (Sense8, Netflix; Doctor Who, BBC1; Richard II, RSC), Letty Thomas (The Divide, The Old Vic; Mary Stuart, Almeida Theatre; The Beasts, The Lyric Hammersmith), Eva Feiler (Othello, RSC; The Merchant of Venice, RSC; Father Brown, BBC), Amy Marchant (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Lyric Hammersmith; Shakespeare in Love, Noel Coward Theatre), Philippa Quinn (Control, Gielgud Theatre; Because We Want To, Rose Theatre; Writers Block, Battersea Arts Centre) and Rujenne Green (The Dog Beneath The Skin, Jermyn Street Theatre; Cookies, Theatre Royal Haymarket).

British Vickers machine gun crew wearing PH-type anti-gas helmets.
British Vickers machine gun crew wearing PH-type anti-gas helmets.

Based on true events, this highly original play explores the devastating impact of chemical warfare and weapons of mass destruction. In the year that marks the centenary of the end of the First World War, this revival has never been more timely.

Performed entirely in verse, Square Rounds follows the lives of Fritz Haber, a German Jewish chemist, and American inventor Hudson Maxim, brother to Hiram Maxim – the inventor of the machine gun. Through their experiences, this play will shine a light on the intricacies of escalating tensions between nations in the build up to the First World War.

American chemist and inventor Hudson Maxim
American chemist and inventor Hudson Maxim

Fritz has been ordered by the Kaiser in Germany to develop a deadly poison gas to help Germany win the First World War but Hudson is concerned for his country, his brother, and the frightening technological advances employed by America’s new European enemies.

Believing his new invention will be an opportunity to escape his status as an outsider in German society, Fritz is unaware that his work will go on to be used to exterminate his own people in the Holocaust just 25 years later.

Chemist Fritz Haber
Chemist Fritz Haber

Director Jimmy Walters comments, We are delighted to be back taking on another Tony Harrison play, not least because it will be the first of two plays we are staging to mark the 100 year anniversary of the First World War. The content of this play is so fascinating that we all cannot wait to begin rehearsals and explore these characters in even further detail.

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