A HAMPSTEAD THEATRE PRODUCTION

DRY POWDER

By SARAH BURGESS
Directed by ANNA LEDWICH

Running time: 1 hour 45 minutes with no interval

£10 - £37 (See ticket information)

Do we work in public relations? Because I’m starting to feel like I accidentally work in public relations

Main Stage

26 Jan - 3 Mar 2018
£10 - £37

Box Office: 020 7722 9301

New York City – open for business 24/7.

In the same week his private equity firm forced massive layoffs at a supermarket chain, Rick threw himself a lavish engagement party - which even featured an elephant - setting off a publicity nightmare. However all’s not lost when you’re the titan of high finance – there’s still an abundance of cash in reserve and Seth, one of Rick’s partners, spots an opportunity to salvage the company’s reputation with an investment that’s both sound and PR-friendly.  But Jenny, the third partner, and Seth’s nemesis, has other ideas: she’s not in business to make friends. If there’s money to be made, she’ll do whatever it takes to generate the maximum return, irrespective of what the critics might say…

The game is on in Sarah Burgess’ breathtakingly witty and virtuosic comedy exploring the vision, the vulnerability, and the vilification of those shaping - and skewing - the economy.

Sarah makes a highly anticipated UK debut with Dry Powder. Her other plays include Kings, Camdenside and FAIL: Failures.

Hampstead regular Anna Ledwich returns to direct following the critically acclaimed Labyrinth (Beth Steel). Other Hampstead productions include Kiss Me (Richard Bean), The Argument (William Boyd), and the Olivier-nominated Four Minutes Twelve Seconds (James Fritz).

Hayley Atwell returns to the stage following Olivier-Award nominated performances in The Pride and A View from the Bridge. Her television credits include Howards End and the Agent Carter series. Film credits include Agent Peggy Carter in the Marvel movie franchise and The Duchess.

Tom Riley’s theatre credits include Arcadia (Broadway) and My City (Almeida) and his television credits include playing Leonardo Da Vinci in Da Vinci’s Demons and Ill Behaviour.

Aidan McArdle’s theatre credits include The Secret Theatre (Shakespeare’s Globe) and The White Devil (Menier Chocolate Factory) and his television credits include Mr Selfridge and The Maigret Series.

Access our 'excellent programme' (The Guardian) ahead of your visit - buy a digital copy now FOR JUST £2 and save £1.50:
 

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  • DAILY MAIL

    'Two plays about financiers opened in London this week. Dry Powder at the Hampstead is pretty capital'

    'American playwright Sarah Burgess plunges us straight into one of those small, ruthless equity fund management firms where they bandy around terms such as ‘top quartile’, ‘zero-based budgeting’, ‘LPs’ (limited partners) and, yes, ‘dry powder’ — the money a fund has in its tank.'

    'At the New York offices of KMM Capital Management they reckon themselves pretty insuperable, executives Seth and Jenny vying to impress their boss Rick with investment proposals. Who can screw the fatter return out of which buy-out?'

    'This 100-minute midtown-Manhattan tingler zips along and is slickly staged by Anna LedwichHayley Atwell,Tom Riley and a maybe too-youthful Aidan McArdle work fine as the KMM trio. The only other character we meet is Jeff (Joseph Balderrama), head of a luggage firm KMM hopes to acquire (and gut).'

    'They use philanthropy cynically as a way to buy political approval and a distinction appears to be made between manufacturers, who employ people, and financiers, who use them. Here is capitalism in its swanky-suited, power- meeting raw; merciless, mathematical, mercantile. Dry Powder is refreshing and provocative.'

    To read the full review click here to visit The Mail Online.

    'DRY POWDER IS A SLICKLY STAGED MIDTOWN-MANHATTAN TINGLER'
    ,
  • ANN TRENEMAN

    'This is a smart and sassy American comedy-drama about the world of high finance in which people throw around words such as “granular” and “zero-based budgeting”. Even the title is in code: it’s not about snow at all, but the available investment capital on hand. This play, by Sarah Burgess, is one of a string of sophisticated American imports seen recently at the Hampstead Theatre: it was originally staged by the Public Theatre in New York in 2016.'

    'This is a whip-smart workplace drama: think The Office, but with very serious money at stake, thus a set backed with a set of revolving mirrors large enough to make Versailles jealous. The play is set in a New York-based private equity firm called KMM Capital Management and when we meet Rick, the boss, he has just had the horrible experience of having to deal with real people: the media are appalled because he threw a crazily lavish party on the same day one of his companies laid off hundreds.'

    'Aidan McArdle is superb as the desperately oily Rick. Jenny may be a “the bitch is back” stereotype, but, as played by Hayley Atwell, she is tart, ruthless and funny. Her foil is the other founding partner, the much less merciless Seth (a very personable Tom Riley), who is just reeling in a deal with a mid-market luggage company in California.'

    'Anna Ledwich directs with the pace of stiletto heels walking into a boardroom, tap-tap-tap. There is no let-up as we are drawn into this world (the sleek set is by Andrew D Edwards) and almost immediately fall into the trap of actually caring about luggage company employees. This is a relentless look at how capitalism works at the sharp end. It’s a Blue Planet-type examination, except for finance, and the creatures we observe are fascinating. Slick, staccato and of-the-moment, this was a guilty pleasure.'

    To read the full review click here to visit The Times online.

    'THIS IS A WHIP-SMART WORKPLACE DRAMA — THINK THE OFFICE, BUT WITH VERY SERIOUS MONEY AT STAKE. A REAL GUILTY PLEASURE'
    ,

Artistic team

WRITER

SARAH BURGESS

DIRECTOR

ANNA LEDWICH

DESIGNER

ANDREW D EDWARDS

LIGHTING

ELLIOT GRIGGS

SOUND

MAX PAPPENHEIM

VIDEO

IAN WILLIAM GALLOWAY

Cast

DRY POWDER RECEIVES AN OLIVIER NOMINATION

Posted on 6 March 2018

Sarah Burgess' Dry Powder in nominated for Best New Comedy at 2018 Olivier Awards

DRY POWDER: ★★★★ FROM THE TIMES

Posted on 5 February 2018

Ann Treneman awards Sarah Burgess' Dry Powder four stars

LISTEN TO ANNA LEDWICH ON BBC'S START THE WEEK

Posted on 5 February 2018

Dry Powder director Anna Ledwich talks to Andrew Marr about representing the financial world on the stage

DRY POWDER: ★★★★ FROM THE DAILY MAIL

Posted on 2 February 2018

Quentin Letts awards Sarah Burgess' Dry Powder four stars

THE EVENING STANDARD INTERVIEWS DRY POWDER'S HAYLEY ATWELL

Posted on 2 February 2018

Robert Dex talks to Hayley Atwell, currently starring in Dry Powder on the Main Stage

Hayley Atwell to star in Dry Powder

Posted on 1 December 2017

Hampstead Theatre presents the UK premiere of Sarah Burgess’ breathtakingly witty and virtuosic comedy, Dry Powder.

TWO NEW MAIN STAGE SHOWS ANNOUNCED

Posted on 5 September 2017

Including the UK premiere of Sarah Burgess' Dry Powder, and Tony Kushner and Jeanine Tesori's celebrated musical Caroline, or Change transfers from a sell-out run at Chichester Festival Theatre

Previews, Mondays and matinees 
Full price: £30/£27/£18
Under 30s/Students: £15/£10* 
Seniors (matinees only): £22/£20
Groups: For every 9 tickets get the 10th free
Access: £16

Tuesday – Saturday evenings 
Full price: £37/£32/£25
Under 30s/Students: £15/£10* 
Groups: For every 9 tickets get the 10th free
Access: £16

*Under 30s and Student concession seats are available in row A (£15) & Band C (£10)

Video and Image Gallery

Hayley Atwell (Jenny) Hayley Atwell (Jenny)
Tom Riley (Seth) Tom Riley (Seth)
Joseph Balderrama (Jeff) Joseph Balderrama (Jeff)
Aidan McArdle (Rick) Aidan McArdle (Rick)
Tom Riley (Seth) and Hayley Atwell (Jenny) Tom Riley (Seth) and Hayley Atwell (Jenny)
Sarah Burgess (Writer) and Anna Ledwich (Director) Sarah Burgess (Writer) and Anna Ledwich (Director)