“Fucking Frogs! My grandfather didn’t die in the English Civil War so’s half the population of France could come over here and live off the soup!”
A riotous journey through four waves of immigration from the 17th century to today. As the French Huguenots, the Irish, the Jews and the Bangladeshis in turn enter the chaotic world of Bethnal Green, each new influx provokes a surge of violent protest over housing, jobs, religion and culture. And the emerging pattern shows that white flight and anxiety over integration is anything but new. Written with scurrilous bravura, Richard Bean’s great sweep of a comedy follows a pair of star-crossed lovers amid cutters’ mobs, Papists, Jewish anarchists and radical Islamists across four tempestuous centuries. England People Very Nice enjoyed a sell-out run at the National Theatre.
Richard Bean is the first playwright to win the Evening Standard Award for Best Play for two plays,
The Heretic and One Man, Two Guvnors was awarded the 2012 Outer Critics’ Circle Award for Outstanding New Broadway Play. His recent credits include Kiss Me (Hampstead), The Nap (Sheffield Crucible),
Great Britain (National Theatre), Made in Dagenham: The Musical (Adelphi Theatre) and Pitcairn (Chichester Minerva Theatre/Shakespeare’s Globe). Richard’s other work includes Under the Whaleback (Royal Court. George Devine Award 2002), The Heretic (The Royal Court. Evening Standard Best New Play 2011), Honeymoon Suite (Pearson Play of the Year), Harvest (Critic’s Circle Best New Play), The House of Games (from David Mamet’s film), a new version of Moliere’s The Hypochondriac, The Big Fellah (Out of Joint), England People Very Nice (National Theatre), The Mentalists (National Theatre), The English Game (Headlong), Up on Roof and Pub Quiz is Life (Hull Truck), In the Club (Hampstead), The God Botherers (Bush Theatre) and Mr England (Sheffield Crucible). His radio plays include Unsinkable, Robin Hood’s Revenge, Of Rats and Men.