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The Painkiller


  • Playwright

    Sean Foley 

  • Adapted / Translated From

    Francis Veber 

  • Author Notes

    A new adaptation of Veber's 1971 farce 'Le Contrat' (1971)

  • Setting

    A boutique hotel, the present day (2011)

  • Synopsis

    Dudley is suicidal. And why not? He's Swindon's seventeenth best news photographer, dresses in casualwear, and sings 'Lady in Red' as spiritual salvation. Oh, and his wife just left him. He decides there is only one escape from his pain.

    Ralph is at ease with the world. And why not? He's the best there is, calls himself 'John Smith', dresses in Armani, and carries a Heckler and Koch PSG1 sniper rifle. But you'd never know. If forced to speak, he would say that he's in the business of 'pain removal'.

    Two men. Two lonely hotel rooms.

    An adjoining door...

    On any other day Dudley would have successfully ended things. On any other day Ralph would have successfully ended someone.

    But not today... Today's different...

    A new adaptation of Veber's popular 1970s farce.

  • Play Type


    Number Of Acts


  • Cast Size Male


  • Cast Size Female



Original Cast  
Policeman Andy Moore
Dent Stuart Graham
Ralph Kenneth Branagh
Dudley Rob Brydon
Porter Mark Hadfield
Michelle Claudia Harrison
Understudy Ben Sleep
Production Team  
Director Sean Foley
Lighting Designer Jon Clark
Fight Director Alison de Burgh
Head of Production Conor McGivern
Technical Manager Keith Ginty
Deputy Stage Manager Francesca Zambra
Deputy Stage Manager Kate Miller
Assistant Stage Manager Georgie Ross
Assistant Stage Manager Alec Reese
Assistant Stage Manager Kate Eccles
Company Stage Manager Nick Trueman
Set & Costume Designer Alice Power
Technician Sean Paul O'Rawe
Technician Michael Harpur
Set Construction All Scene All Props
Wardrobe Supervisor Liz Cullinane
Wardrobe Supervisor Susan Coates
Production Photography Stefan Hill
Music & Sound Designer Ben Ringham
Music & Sound Designer Max Ringham
Creative Producer Sean Foley
Creative Producer Kenneth Branagh
Make-Up Nuala Campbell
Props Patricia Hughes


  • Contact

    Independent Talent Group

  • Address

    40 Whitfield Street
    London W1T 2RH

  • Phone

    + 44 (0)20 7636 6565

  • Website


  • Territory

    All Territories

  • Rights Type

    All Rights

  • Contact

    Independent Talent Group

  • Address

    40 Whitfield Street
    London W1T 2RH

  • Phone

    + 44 (0)20 7636 6565

  • Website


The information for this entry was provided by the Lyric Theatre.