For the first time since theatres closed on 16 March 2020, Kiln Theatre will re-open to share live performance with audiences with a season of work including three world premières – Reasons You Should(n’t) Love Me by Amy TriggNW Trilogy by Moira BuffiniSuhayla El-Bushra and Roy Williams, and The Wife of Willesden adapted by Zadie Smith from Chaucer’s The Wife of Bath, and a major revival of Pulitzer Prize winning playwright Ayad Akhtar’s The Invisible Hand.

Artistic Director of Kiln Theatre, Indhu Rubasingham, said today, “After a long hard year, it is with great excitement that we can finally announce a return to live performance on the stage at Kiln Theatre. What we are looking forward to most is welcoming audiences back into our building. We cannot wait to join together in the shared experience of powerful story telling – to come out of our isolation and to laugh, debate and cry in company. This year has convinced us, more than ever before, there is nothing like the power of theatre to unite us and enable us to share the experiences and complexities of our varied lived experiences.

“It was important to us to bring new work to our audiences – to challenge and provoke new conversations. We’re opening our building with the world première of Amy Trigg’s Reasons You Should(n’t) Love Me – the winner of the inaugural The Women’s Prize for Playwriting, which we will partner with Ellie Keel, Paines Plough and 45North to present.

“I will then return to my collaboration with the brilliant Ayad Akhtar with a major revival of his play The Invisible Hand – very much a play for the moment we have found ourselves inhabiting.

“Later this year we will stage NW Trilogy – three new plays by three essential and heart-felt voices, Moira Buffini, Suhayla El-Bushra and Roy Williams, and directed by our Associates Taio Lawson and Susie McKenna; and completing the season is the world première of Zadie Smith’s The Wife of Willesden. With our partners at Brent 2020: Borough of Culture, we are thrilled to present these two major works which are truly born of our community. We are proud to offer this wealth of new work across this year to allow audiences to discover theatre and its possibilities afresh with new meaning of what we have experienced over the past twelve months.”

The new season will be staged in a Covid safe environment following government advice.

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Kiln Theatre has been granted the use of Society of London Theatre & UK Theatre’s See It Safely mark. The mark certifies that they are complying with the latest Government and industry COVID-19 guidelines, to ensure the safety of their staff and audiences. Ticket holders can find out more here [] about the measures that have been put in place ahead of their visit, and what they will need to know beforehand.


The Women’s Prize for Playwriting, Paines Plough, 45North and Kiln Theatre present


Written and performed by Amy Trigg

Directed by Charlotte Bennett; Designed by Jean Chan; Lighting Design by Guy Hoare

Composer and Sound Design by Elena Peña

21 May – 12 June

Captioned Performance, 7 June – 7.30pm

Post Show Discussion, 8 June – 7.30pm

Audio Described Performance, 10 June – 7.30pm

For a long time I didn’t know how it’d work. Or what I’d be able to feel. People would ask me if I could have sex and I’d feign shock and act wildly offended whilst secretly wanting to grab them by the shoulders and be like “I don’t know, Janet!” 

Juno was born with spina bifida and is now clumsily navigating her twenties amidst street healers, love, loneliness – and the feeling of being an unfinished project.

Winner of The Women’s Prize for Playwriting 2020Amy Trigg’s remarkable debut play Reasons You Should(n’t) Love Me is a hilarious, heart-warming tale about how shit our wonderful lives can be.  

Amy Trigg is a writer and actor from Essex. Reason You Should(n’t) Love Me is her first full length play. Trigg’s essay An Ode to Improvisation (and Poehler and Fey) features in the book Feminist’s Don’t Wear Pink (and other lies) curated by Scarlett Curtis. She wrote two short digital plays for the Royal Shakespeare Company and Midsummer Festival in 2020, and her one-woman sketch The Rebrand won Colchester New Comedian of the Year 2016. Born with Spina bifida, she was the first wheelchair user to graduate from a performance course at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts.

Charlotte Bennett directs. She is Joint Artistic Director of Paines Plough. Previously she was Associate Director at Soho Theatre where she led the new writing department, developing artists and commissions and programming the upstairs studio. For Paines Plough she has directed Run Sister Run by Chloë Moss. For Soho she has directed Whitewash by Gabriel Bisset-Smith, Happy Hour by Jack Rooke, curated a six-month off-site arts festival in Waltham Forest and led playwriting competition the Verity Bargate Award. Prior to this she was Artistic Director of Forward Theatre Project; an artists’ collective she founded. For Forward Theatre Project she made and directed new plays which toured nationally inspired by working in partnership with different communities around the UK and at venues including National Theatre, York Theatre Royal, Northern Stage, Derby Theatre, Live Theatre and The Lowry. As a freelance director she has worked extensively for Open Clasp Theatre Company, creating new plays inspired by marginalised women in the North-East. She also held the role of Creative Producer for theatre company RashDash where she toured experimental new theatre around the UK. 


Kiln Theatre and Dasha Theatricals present


by Ayad Akhtar

Cast: Tony JayawardenaScott Karim, Daniel LapaineSid Sagar

Directed by Indhu Rubasingham; Designed by Lizzie Clachan; Lighting Design by Oliver Fenwick

Composer and Sound Design by Alexander Caplen

1 -31 July

Post Show Discussion, 13 July – 7.30pm

Audio Described Performance, 15 July – 7.30pm

Captioned Performance, 26 July – 7.30pm

You see we are prisoners of a corrupt country that is our own making. But don’t pretend you don’t participate. You do. Of course you do.

American banker Nick Bright knows that his freedom comes at a price. Confined to a cell in rural Pakistan, every second counts. Who will decide his fate? His captors, or the whims of the market?

Following a sold out run in 2016, Kiln Theatre Artistic Director Indhu Rubasingham directs the first major revival of Ayad Akhtar’s tense, thrilling and ‘fiendishly clever’ (Financial Times) The Invisible Hand.

Ayad Akhtar (Barack Obama Favourite Book 2020 Homeland Elegies) is a Pulitzer Prize-winner, two-time Tony Award-nominee and winner of the Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

Ayad Akhtar was born in New York City and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He is the author of American Dervish, published in 25 languages worldwide and a 2012 Best Book of the Year at Kirkus Reviews, Toronto’s Globe and Mail, Shelf-Awareness, and O (Oprah) Magazine. His most recent novel, the critically acclaimed Homeland Elegies, was published in September. As a screenwriter, he was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award for Best Screenplay for The War Within. He has received commissions from Lincoln Center and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. He is a graduate of Brown and Columbia Universities with degrees in Theater and Film Directing. The Invisible Hand premièred at the Repertory Theater of St Louis before a run at Kiln Theatre. Other theatre credits include Disgraced (American Theater Company in Chicago; Lincoln Center, New York and Bush Theatre – Pulitzer Prize for Drama) and The Who & The What (La Jolla Playhouse).

Tony Jayawardena returns to the theatre to play Imam Saleem – he previously appeared in White Teeth and The Invisible Hand. His theatre credits include Christmas at the Snow Globe (Shakespeare’s Globe), Hobson’s Choice (Royal Exchange Theatre), Young Marx (Bridge Theatre), Lions and Tigers, Twelfth Night (Shakespeare’s Globe), Bend It Like Beckham (Phoenix Theatre), The Roaring GirlThe Arden of FavershamThe White DevilThe Empress, Twelfth Night (RSC), Dick WhittingtonLove and Stuff (Theatre Royal Stratford East), The Wind In The Willows (West Yorkshire Playhouse), Wah! Wah! Girls (Sadler’s Wells/ Kneehigh), Great Expectations (English Touring Theatre), The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (Royal and Derngate, Northampton), London AssuranceAll’s Well That Ends Well, England People Very Nice (National Theatre). For television his recent work includes The Duchess, The Crown, Ackley Bridge, The Tunnel, The Windsors, Strike BackThe Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby; and for film, his work includes TowerblockTrance and A Cat Named Bob.

Scott Karim plays Bashir. His theatre work includes The Arrival, The Invisible (Bush Theatre), Oklahoma!, The Country Wife (Chichester Festival Theatre), The Village (Theatre Royal Stratford East), Young Marx (Bridge Theatre), Food (Finborough Theatre), Imogen (Shakespeare’s Globe), King Lear and Brave New World (Royal & Derngate). For television, his work includes Halo, The Dumping Ground, Dracula, Crazy Diamond and Britannia.

Daniel Lapaine returns to the theatre to play Nick – he previously appeared in Holy Sh*t and The Invisible Hand. His theatre credits include The Merchant of Venice (Shakespeare’s Globe), Other Desert Cities, Hedda Gabler (The Old Vic), The Winter’s Tale (Sheffield Crucible), The Dance of Death (Donmar Trafalgar), All My Sons (Apollo Theatre), Scenes from the Back of Beyond, F***ing Games (Royal Court), Les Parents Terribles, King Lear (Sydney Theatre Company), Island (Belvoir Street Theatre), Romeo and Juliet, Richard III, Hamlet (Bell Shakespeare Company). For television his work includes Upright, Van der Valk, My Husband’s Double Life, Black Mirror, The Durrells, Versailles, Catastrophe, Critical, Vexed, Lewis, Vera, Black Mirror, Identity, Moonshot, Hotel Babylon; Sex, the City and Me; Jane Hall, Good Housekeeping Guide, Golden Hour, Jericho, Death on the Nile, Redcap, Helen of Troy, I Saw You and Tenth Kingdom. Film credits include Dead in Tombstone, Zero Dark Thirty, Gozo, Jack the Giant Killer, Shanghai, Last Chance Harvey, Collusion, Abduction Club, Ritual, Journeyman, Double Jeopardy, Elephant Juice, Brokedown Palace, 54, Say You’ll Be Mine, 1999, Dangerous Beauty, Polish Wedding and Muriel’s Wedding.

Sid Sagar returns to the Kiln Theatre to play Dar – he previously appeared in White Teeth and The Inivisible Hand. His other theatre credits include The Starry Messenger (Wyndham’s Theatre), hang (Sheffield Crucible), Julius Caesar (Bridge Theatre), Queen Anne (RSC/Theatre Royal Haymarket), The TempestCymbelineThe OresteiaThe Taming of the Shrew (Shakespeare’s Globe), Treasure (Finborough Theatre), The History Boys (UK tour), True Brits (HighTide/ Edinburgh/Bush Theatre),and Eternal Love (Shakespeare’s Globe & English Touring Theatre). His television work includesAnatomy of a Scandal, A Discovery of Witches, Unprecedented: Going Forward, Silent Witness, Wild Bill,Press, Strike: Career of Evil,The Hollow Crown and The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies; and for film, The Batman, Cruella, Belfast, Death on the Nile, Artemis Fowl, Dolittle, Ready Player One, Eaten By Troll, Murder on the Orient Express, Karma Magnet

Indhu Rubasingham is Artistic Director of Kiln Theatre. Her work for the company includes Pass OverWhen the Crows Visit, Wife, White TeethHoly Sh!t, Red Velvet (which transferred to New York and later to the Garrick Theatre as part of the Kenneth Branagh Season) and Handbagged (winner of Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre – also West End, UK tour, Washington DC and New York). Other productions for Kiln Theatre include The Invisible Hand, A Wolf in Snakeskin Shoes, Multitudes, The House That Will Not StandPaper DollsWomen, Power and Politics, Stones in His Pockets, Detaining Justice, The Great Game: Afghanistan, Fabulation and Starstruck. Other theatre credits include The Great Wave, Ugly Lies the BoneThe Motherf**cker with the Hat (Evening Standard Award for Best Play), The Waiting Room (all National Theatre), The Ramayana (National Theatre/ Birmingham Rep), Belong, Disconnect, Free Outgoing, Lift Off, Clubland, The Crutch and Sugar Mummies (Royal Court Theatre), Ruined (Almeida Theatre), Yellowman and Anna in the Tropics (Hampstead Theatre), Secret Rapture and The Misanthrope (Minerva, Chichester Festival Theatre), Romeo and Juliet (Chichester Festival Theatre), Pure Gold (Soho Theatre), The No Boys Cricket Club and Party Girls (Theatre Royal Stratford East), Wuthering Heights (Birmingham REP), Heartbreak House (Watford Palace Theatre), Sugar Dollies and Shakuntala (Gate Theatre), A River Sutra (Three Mill Island Studios), Rhinoceros (UC Davis, California) and A Doll’s House (Young Vic).

The season continues…


Kiln Theatre presents


by Moira Buffini, Suhayla El-Bushra and Roy Williams

Directed by Taio Lawson and Susie McKenna; Designed by Sadeysa Greenaway-Bailey; Lighting Design by Richard Howell;Composer and Sound Design by Ben and Max Ringham;Movement, Fight and Intamacy Director Yarit Dor

Set amongst the vibrant, intense cacophony of North West London, NW Trilogy is a collection of vivid stories that remember and celebrate people who changed the course of history. The personal is political in these soulful explorations of what it means to be part of one of the most dynamic communities in the world. 

First, we reel to a dance hall in ‘County Kilburn’ in Moira Buffini’s Dance Floor where the Guinness flows, the music never stops and for homesick Aoife, there’s far more at stake than a dance. 

In Roy Williams’ bittersweet Life of Riley, Paulette is on a journey to connect with her estranged father Riley, a reggae musician once part of the influential Trojan Records scene, who can’t seem to let go of the past.

And, Suhayla El-Bushra’s Waking/Walking introduces us to Anjali, a wife, mother and newly arrived migrant following Idi Armin’s expulsion of the Asian minority from Uganda, who is torn between not making a fuss and seizing her moment to take a stand as the Grunwick dispute unfolds.

NW Trilogy is powerful, funny and epic and shows us how we can change the world from our doorstep.

Presented as part of the Brent 2020: London Borough of Culture.

This production is supported by Cockayne – Grants for the Arts and the London Community Foundation; and the Stanley Thomas Johnson Foundation.

Moira Buffini‘s plays include Handbagged (Kiln Theatre / West End / US), Gabriel (Soho Theatre / UK Tour), (MIF / National Theatre), Welcome to Thebes, A Vampire Story (National Theatre), Dying For It, Marianne Dreams (Almeida Theatre), Dinner (RNT Loft / West End / UK tour), Loveplay (Barbican), The Games Room (Soho Theatre) and Blavatsky’s Tower (Machine Room). For telelvison, her work includes Harlots; and for film, The Dig, Jane Eyre and Tamara Drewe.

Suhayla El-Bushra was writer in residence at the National Theatre Studio from April 2015 to August 2016, during which time her adaptation of Nikolai Erdman’s The Suicide was staged in the Lyttelton Theatre. Other stage work includes The Kilburn Passion (Kiln Theatre), Pigeons (Royal Court Theatre / UK tour), Cuckoo (Unicorn Theatre) and Arabian Nights (Royal Lyceum, Edinburgh). For screen her credits include 2 series of Channel 4’s Ackley Bridge, and a short film for Film4.

Roy Williams is an award-winning playwright. His recent plays include Death of England (National Theatre), 846 (Theatre Royal Stratford East and GDIF), Sing Yer Heart Out for the Lads (Chichester Festival Theatre), The Firm, (Hampstead Theatre, Downstairs), Soul: The Untold Story of Marvin Gaye (Royal and Derngate / Hackney Empire), Antigone (Pilot Theatre / UK tour), Wildfire (Hampstead Theatre) Advice for the Young at Heart (Theatre Centre), an adaptation of The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner (Pilot Theatre/ UK Tour), Sucker Punch (Royal Court Theatre, nominated for Olivier Award for Best Play), Kingston ‘14 (Theatre Royal Stratford East) and Category B (Kiln Theatre).

Kiln Theatre Associate Director Taio Lawson directs. His work includes adaptations and instillation, including Devil for East-15 and HOME at the Young Vic. He was Resident Director at Sheffield Theatres (part of the Regional Theatre Young Director Scheme), where he directed hang. As Director credits include How To Make Love To A Muslim Without Freaking Out (rehearsed reading, Bush Theatre), What We Are, 90’s Kid (ETC Theatre), Gutted ‘n’ Battered (UK and international tour). For Sheffield Theatres, Assistant Director credits include Love and Information, Frost/Nixon, The Wizard of Oz and Desire Under The Elms. As Assistant Director credits include Life of Galileo(Young Vic), Oil, They Drink It in the Congo (Almeida Theatre).

Kiln Theatre Associate Director Susie McKenna directs and her work for the company includes Blues in the Night (Olivier Award nomination for Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre). She was Creative Director of Hackney Empire from 2010 – 2017, her directing credits there include Beau Jest, Sit and Shiver, Man Dem on the Wall Live, Kat & Tameka Show, La Variété, Ha Ha Hackney and writer director of 21 pantomimes. Other credits include writer/director The Silver Sword (Belgrade Theatre/UK tour), Once on This Island (Birmingham Rep/Nottingham Playhouse), Oranges and Elephants (Hoxton Hall), A Midsummer Night’s Madness (National Black Theatre of Harlem/Hackney Empire/Edinburgh Festival Fringe), Macbeth (Edinburgh Festival Fringe), A Christmas Carol (Arts Theatre).


Kiln Theatre presents

in association with Brent 2020, London Borough of Culture


Adapted by Zadie Smith from Chaucer’s The Wife of Bath

Directed by Indhu Rubasingham; Designed by Robert Jones; Lighting Design by Guy Hoare;Composer and Sound Design by Ben and Max Ringham

Married five times. Mother. Lover. Aunt. Friend.

She plays many roles round here. And never

Scared to tell the whole of her truth, whether

Or not anyone wants to hear it. Wife

Of Willesden: pissed enough to tell her life

Story to whoever has ears and eyes…

The world premiere of Zadie Smith’s The Wife of Willesden comes to Kiln Theatre for a strictly limited run. Based on Chaucer’s The Wife of Bath, this irreverent, bawdy and beautiful new comedy celebrates the life and times of one of literature’s most beloved characters.

Kiln Theatre Artistic Director Indhu Rubasingham directs following her 2018 sold out, hit production of Smith’s White Teeth. 

This production is supported by Dasha Epstein.

Zadie Smith is the author of the novels White TeethThe Autograph ManOn BeautyNW, and Swing Time, as well as two collections of essays, Changing My Mind and Feel Free and the collection of short stories, Grand Union. Her novels have won multiple literary awards and been translated into many languages. White Teeth was adapted for the stage at the Kiln Theatre in 2018. She is a professor of fiction at New York University and writes regularly for the New Yorker and the New York Review of Books. Zadie Smith divides her time between New York and London.

Kiln Theatre


269 Kilburn High Road, London, UK, NW6 7JR

Box Office: 020 7328 1000

Tickets from £15

All tickets for first preview £15

Under 26 – £10 (subject to availability)

Access, Over 65, Local, Student and Group rates available, for further details, please see the website

Multi-buy – 25% off if tickets for Reasons You Should(n’t) Love Me and The Invisible Hand are bought in the same transaction.


We offer free tickets and exclusive discounts to those who can’t afford to come. If you fit any of the below criteria, get in touch and we can help you get a ticket.

If you are homeless, out of work or receive Housing Benefits, Income Support, Jobseeker’s Allowance or Employment and Support Allowance (valid ID, statements or proof universal tax credit will be required when collecting tickets).

Employees of NHS, Police Force, Fire Brigade, Armed Forces, The Coastguard, RNLI, Prison Officers or Social Care Workers (valid ID payslip and name badges will be required when collecting tickets).

Email [email protected]