Haunted Child by Joe Penhall
(Modern Plays)

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We have the tools to enlighten and yet our world is darkening. We live in an era of pessimism and worry; we are hollowed out, lurching from crisis to crisis, with no faith that anything will improve, and no great hopes to sustain us. So what’s the answer?

A small boy is driving his mother to distraction - waking at night, hearing phantom noises and fixating on his absent father.

Douglas attends an innocuous motivational course involving esoteric philosophy and mysteriously abandons his wife and child to "live in a specific, pre-ordained way according to the tenets of a spiritual leader." Is it a predatory cult or the solution to all their problems? And how can a small child be expected to understand adult thinking at its most complex and self-destructive?

His first dramatic work since 2007, Haunted Child marks the return to the stage of multi-award winning playwright and screenwriter Joe Penhall. With his trademark dark humour and sly observation, he poignantly explores the gulf between childhood and adulthood and asks disturbing questions about the lure of spiritual release in increasingly difficult times.

About Joe Penhall

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Award-winning writer Joe Penhall was described by The Financial Times as 'one of the finest playwrights of his generation.' His debut at the Royal Court, Some Voices, won the John Whiting Award for best new play. His National Theatre play Blue/Orange won an Olivier Award, an Evening Standard Award and the Critics Circle Award for Best Play. Joe wrote and produced the BAFTA winning BBC serial Moses Jones and his feature film of Some Voices starred Daniel Craig and premiered in competition at the Cannes Film festival . This was followed by Enduring Love, also starring Daniel Craig, based on Ian McEwan's novel; and his adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's novel, The Road, starring Charlize Theron and Viggo Mortensen, which premiered in competition at the Venice Film Festival in 2009.
Published December 1, 2011 by Methuen Drama. 112 pages
Genres: Arts & Photography, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

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