An Experiment With An Air Pump by Shelagh Stephenson

An Experiment With An Air Pump by Shelagh Stephenson

 “Is the value of knowledge worth more than the value of life?”

 St Michael’s Players has never been afraid to present theatre that tests both the group and the audience. Their Autumn production An Experiment with An Air Pump is no exception.

Seeking out plays that enthrall, excite and leave you gripped by the subject matter, whether it’s a comedy, panto or a hard-hitting drama with a strong message, means that St Michael’s Players’ productions are always an absorbing experience.

Their 70th year elevated the group to new levels and has seen them push further boundaries. Their first-ever musical – an open-air production of Salad Days plus a successful debut at Edinburgh Festival Fringe with their award-winning powerful, topical and sensitive production The Long Road –a resounding success.

St Michael’s Players’ Autumn production strongly exhibits the group’s ethos of presenting plays that challenge. An Experiment with An Air Pump is a gripping drama that deals with the ethics of science and women scientists at the turn of two significant centuries.

In 1799 Newcastle Joseph Fenwick, a radical forward-looking physician and scientist carries out experiments while his neglected wife consoles herself with brandy, his twin daughters feud, and one of his two assistants attempts to seduce the deformed maidservant. In the same house in 1999, Ellen, an eminent geneticist, is torn between ethical doubts and the lure of a new job offering a significant and much-needed increase in salary. A gruesome discovery under the kitchen floor adds further complications.”

“This is a thought-provoking and moving play. It demonstrates the differences in attitude towards ethics, towards women, towards science and towards women in science in two different eras – how much has changed and, sadly, how much hasn’t. The characters are convincing, with their complexities slowly revealed. Having the same actors playing the main roles in both eras underlines the differences and similarities.” Director | Bryony Wilman

Just how far would someone go for the advancement of science?”

Join St Michael’s Players this October and discover what lurks beneath the surface!

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Warning: This play contains adult themes and some strong language



Doors | 19:15
7:45 pm - 10:00 pm


Tickets From £8 (£12 on the door)


St Michael's Centre
Elmwood Road, W4 3DY
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An Experiment With An Air Pump by Shelagh Stephenson