The birth of their daughter should be one of the happiest days of Ed and Lisa's life. An NHS maternity ward and their somewhat unusual circumstances make for an unsettling and satisfyingly comic sequence of events that tests their relationship to the core, and raises intrinsic questions about the nature of birth and renewal, fear and isolation. Subverting the received gender roles to darkly comic and disturbing effect, the play charts Ed and Lisa's personally fraught experience at the behest of an NHS labour ward. Birthday achieves an intensely comic counterpoint to the visceral domestic drama sutured to bigger issues of aspiration, sacrifice, who we are, how we communicate, the triumph of tolerance, nature and ultimately love. Derby Shakespeare Theatre Company presents Birthday by kind permission of Samuel French Ltd.
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