Arcola Theatre presents

Broken Lad

A new comedy by Robin Hooper

Directed by Richard Speir

“What lies on the bottom of the ocean and twitches?”
“A nervous wreck.”

Above a pub in North London, Phil is fighting off panic about his comeback gig.

Once a regular stand-up on Saturday night television, Phil’s back to square one. Dropped by his manager, he finds himself with only his old friend Ned at his side, whose friendship increasingly feels like unrequited obsession.  As Phil laments his dwindling career, his son arrives believing that his dad harbours a damaging secret. With the gig hour nearing, old flames and past misdemeanours catch up with the family. Tonight, Phil’s career might not be the only thing in tatters.

Comic and moving, Broken Lad is a subtle examination of masculinity and virility in distress.


Robin Hooper‘s previous work at Arcola includes Not the Love I Cry For (2006). His previous plays include The Move (one of the first NT Platforms to tour), Astonish Me (RSC and Almeida Theatre then Home Theatre off-Broadway), and Queer Fish (BAC – Critics Choice, Time Out, Whats On).

Richard Speir‘s previous work at Arcola includes Gentlemen (2020) and Spun (2018).


This show is part of Arcola’s outdoor festival Today I’m Wiser. Explore the full programme → 

The health and wellbeing of our audiences is an absolute priority for us. Please have a read of the measures we’ve put in place to keep you safe.