Current Season

The End of the Food Chain

By Tim Firth
26 - 31 March, 2012

Frozen fish fighting

What can we play next

Debbie is off to the management training instead of Bruce

Fudge stick sword fight

Synopsis

A comedy drama. Kale Moor Grocery Depot is the supply depot for a chain of down-market supermarkets. Under the imaginative guidance of Bruce “The Games Master”, work here is an endless round of food sports (sprout tag, Smartie-and-flan tiddlywinks, frozen fish sword-fighting), much enjoyed by the all-male night-shift workers. But a major change is due, for their new colleague is not a born games player but is – even worse – a woman! A woman who can see through the childish antics of the men to reveal the insecurities and weaknesses beneath. At first relations are reasonably civilised, but the gloves come off when the cerebral challenge of murder-mystery role-playing is presented to the team. It originally starred Stephen Tomlinson and Mark Benton.


Cast

Bruce
BRUCE STURROCK
Ewan
HAYDN CAVANAGH
Dids
DAVID AYRES
Robbo
PETER WHITLEY
Craig
TIM STEERE
Debbie
LIZ HALL
Director
MERVYN BUTTON

Director's Notes

Welcome to the “animal shift” at Kale Moor grocery distribution depot. Under the imaginative guidance of Bruce “The Gamesmaster”, work here is an endless round of food sports (sprout tag, Smartie-and-flanbase tiddlywinks, frozen fish swordfighting), sarcasm and juvenile humour, much enjoyed by the all-male night-shift workers. But a major change is due, for their new colleague is not a born games player but is - even worse - a woman who can see through the childish antics of the men to the insecurities and weaknesses beneath. At first, relations are reasonably civilized, but the gloves come off when the cerebral challenge of murder-mystery role-playing is presented to the team... and there are surprises in store for all of them.

The End of the Food chain is another comic gem from the author of Neville’s Island and BBC TV’s Preston Front.

“Highly entertaining… pungently characterised… a hilarious dark comedy” INDEPENDENT’.

I am thrilled with the set for this play and would like to thank Robin Green, making his debut as set designer for Bingley, for the thought and work he has put into it.

About the playwright

Tim Firth, born 1964 on The Wirral Merseyside, has lived all his life in the North West of England on the border of Cheshire and Lancashire. He spent most of his time at his Warrington comprehensive school writing songs and it was only a couple of months before going to Cambridge to read English that he attended an Arvon Foundation course in West Yorkshire.

Tim first came to the attention of theatregoers with the worldwide hit comedy Neville’s Island, and to television viewers with the 1994 series Preston Front. On stage he went on to win an Olivier award for his musical Our House, and on television to win awards for works including The Flint Street Nativity, Cruise of the Gods and the children’s series The Rottentrolls.

Tim’s first two feature films were released in 2003. Calendar Girls starring Helen Mirren and Julie Walters went on to become one of the most successful British films of all time.

Opening at the Liverpool Playhouse, the stage musical version of The Flint Street Nativity became the most successful Christmas production in the theatre’s history and his play Sign of the Times, starring Stephen Tompkinson and Tom Shaw toured the UK in early 2009, opening in the West End 2011.

Tim’s stage play Calendar Girls ran in the West End gaining Olivier nominations and the Whatsonstage audience award. It has now toured the UK for over four years breaking the box office record for a play at every theatre it has visited. In 2011 it beat the all time British box office record for a play, and has raised over half a million pounds for Blood Cancer Charities, funding its own research project in Yorkshire hospitals. It has also crossed continents, playing all across Europe, South America, Australia and Canada.

In March 2010, Tim was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Literature by the University of Chester.


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