The Human Body


ISBN: 9781839043260
Author: By Lucy Kirkwood
Publication Date: 29/02/2024
Publisher: Nick Hern Books
Extent: 96pp.
Availability: Available

SKU: BK3454 Categories: , Tags: ,

‘The window for change – real change I mean – will close. It’s already closing. Very soon it will be shut, and we shan’t be able to get it open again.’

1948, Shropshire: the winter is freezing, austerity is biting and Iris Elcock, GP, socialist and Labour Party councillor, is working tirelessly to implement Nye Bevan’s National Health Service Act and its revolutionary promise of free healthcare for all.

At home she is a mother, and wife to a fellow GP, an ex-Navy man scarred by the war. But a chance meeting with George Blythe, a local boy who has made it to Hollywood, turns her quiet, certain world upside down.

A story of political and private passions, Lucy Kirkwood’s play The Human Body was first performed at the Donmar Warehouse, London, in 2024, directed by Michael Longhurst and Ann Yee, and starring Keeley Hawes and Jack Davenport.

‘Kirkwood is the most rewarding dramatist of her generation’ Independent

‘A fabulously rich piece of writing’

‘Kirkwood’s script crackles with unspoken desires, disappointments, yearning and some fantastic humour… deftly weaves bigger politics with the politics of a marriage and affair’

‘Delicate and poignant… has its author’s characteristic intelligence and wit, the dialogue crammed with texture and vivacity’
The Stage

‘Vivid and engrossing… Kirkwood is such a wonderful writer’

‘The golden age of cinema meets theatre in this thoroughly enjoyable play, sprinkled with cracking comedic one-liners’
Theatre Weekly

‘A terrific, grown-up and engrossing history play full of Coward-esque dry wit’

‘Glorious… an engrossing romance… a theatre-cinema hybrid that blends post-war Hollywood glamour with the British political landscape… a celebration of the founding principles of the NHS and those who campaigned to make it happen… great emotional impact’
Reviews Hub

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