ON THE HARMFUL EFFECTS OF TOBACCO by Anton Chekhov & CAN CAUSE DEATH by Alison Carr was originally commissioned and produced by Charlotte Bennett and Sophie Watson for Forward Theatre Project

The double-bill debuted at The National Theatre in 2010, directed by Charlotte Bennett and starring Olivier Award winning actor David Bradley. It subsequently transferred to Northern Stage in Feb 2011 and the Latitude Festival in July 2011. Future dates TBC.




Nyukhin, tired husband and enthusiastic smoker, is delivering a lecture (at the request of his wife) on the evils of smoking … but is it really that simple? Follow this up by meeting his wife Popova in Alison Carr’s revealing companion piece ‘Can Cause Death’.

Classic comic Chekhov meets the best in new writing as husband and wife are brought together in this stunning double-bill.


  • ” … she [Carr] pretty much matched the Russian storyteller monologue for monologue … Carr has created a true companion to the original piece, leaving you in no doubt that these two were perfectly matched” – The Journal
  • “Carr and Chekhov might sound like an unlikely combination, but it is pure, experimental, laugh out loud genius” –The Northern Echo
  • “Carr has captured the essence of the Chekhov play and created a worthy companion piece.”British Theatre Guide
  • “Alison Carr is a shrewd and accomplished writer. Mr Chekhov has found his soul partner in this study of marriage. 9/10” euVue.co.uk
  • ” … to witness David Bradley bring these two monologues to life is what live theatre is all about ****” Whatsonstage.com
  • “The directing and acting was superb and the words written (and translated of course) were near flawless … 4.5/5”kyeo.tv



This co-production between Forward Theatre Project and York Theatre Royal was first performed at the National Theatre in November 2010.

The team was as follows:

NYUKHIN & POPOVA: David Bradley

Directed by Charlotte Bennett

Designer: Fabrice Serafino

Composer: Philippa Herrick

Lighting Designer: Richard Howell

Produced by Charlotte Bennett & Sophie Watson for FTP

With thanks to: Damian Crudden, YTR, Paines Plough, Tom Stoppard, Ray Cooney, Lee Hall, Chris Heckels, Script Yorkshire & all contributing FTP writers


  • 19/3/11: Latitude Festival line-up announced, incl Forward Theatre Project
  • 16/2/11: *Opening night @ Northern Stage*
  • 16/2/11: “There’s no smoke without fire” – The Evening Chronicle preview
  • 14/2/11: “Local playwright answers back to Chekhov” – Newcastle Courier
  • 10/2/11: “Five minutes with … David Bradley” – The Northern Echo
  • 8/2/11: Preview at euVue.co.uk
  • 6/2/11: “Anton Chekhov & Alison Carr share the stage” – The British Theatre Guide preview
  • 1/2/11: “New role really is smokin” – interview with David Bradley in Culture magazine(pgs 16&17)
  • 31/1/11: “Local Playwright Staging Play On Home Soil” – preview at whatsonstage.com
  • 8/12/10: Tickets are now on sale for Northern Stage, Wed 16 & Thurs 17 Feb 2011 @ 8pm … click [here] to book via the website, or call the Box Office on 0191 230 5151
  • 14/11/10: Double-bill debuts at the National … click [here] for my blog. (If you’re on Facebook, see some more photos from the night [here])
  • 16/10/10: **SOLD OUT** As in, no tickets left. As in, want a ticket? There aren’t any. Wheeeee!
  • 12/10/10: **TICKETS ON GENERAL SALE NOW** Click [here] to book online or telephone the Box Office on 020 7452 3000
  • 17/9/10: Chekhov & Carr will make their double-bill debut at The National Theatre!  More details [here]
  • 7/9/10: We workshopped the play last week … details and some photos [here]


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