The Contingency Plan

Theatre, Drama
The Contingency Plan, Donmar Warehouse, 2020
Photograph: Damien Frost

Time Out says

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Timely revival for Steve Waters’s double bill of dramas about a glaciologist trying to warn Britain of a giant flood

Steve Waters’s double bill of eco-disaster plays ran to acclaim at the Bush Theatre in 2009, and the intervening decade has not only seen our environment deteriorate terrifyingly, but has demonstrated how hard it is to write a decent play about the climate emergency. Hence, ‘The Contingency’ plan is a smart and timely revival from the Donmar, staged in partnership with Theatr Clwyd, and given some contemporary tweaks by Waters to bring it up to speed. The two plays are set in a shared world in which a gigantic flood is imminent: in the first, ‘On the Beach’, glaciologist Will Paxton returns home to his parents in Norfolk to warn them of the imminent catastrophe; in the second, ‘Resilience’, Paxton tries to persuade politicians to take action, but finds a reluctance to embrace his unpalatable truths. Caroline Steinbeis directs ‘On the Beach’, and Chelsea Walker directs ‘Resilience’, with design for both by Alex Lowde.

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