Speaking in Tongues Theatre Company

Olga’S Room

Dea Loher Translator David Tushingham

Directed by: Samuel Miller

“The only way not to be a heroine, a martyr, a victim, is to make myself an accomplice, a collaborator.”

Communist. Jew. Revolutionary. Lover. Mother. Olga Benario’s story is a searing tale of survival as alongside her fellow prisoners she struggles to hold onto her disintegrating sense of self.

Based on real events of the 1930s-40s focusing on Benario’s time in Brazil and Germany, this gripping play was the first work by one of Europe’s foremost contemporary dramatists, Dea Loher, and was originally performed in 1992.

After their highly successful run in Luxembourg City, Speaking in Tongues bring the English language world premiere to London. Based in both cities, the company aims to bring European writing to English speaking audiences across the continent.

See the OLGA’S ROOM TRAILER online at this address www.speakingintonguestheatre.org

Olga’s Room is presented with the support of Arts Council England, Ministère de la Culture Luxembourg, the Fondation Indépendance de la Banque Internationale à Luxembourg and the Œuvre Nationale de Secours G-D Charlotte Luxembourg.

22nd JANUARY: Post show discussion on translation supported by the Goethe Institue – Q and A with David Tushingham, translator of Dea Loher’s work.



“Presented in a production of punishing intensity by Samuel Miller”

“the piece opens with Olga – played by wonderfully spiky Bethan Clark whose performance is all the more harrowing because it has such an acerbic scorn for easy sentiment”

“eloquently translated by David Tushingham”

THE GUARDIAN – Lyn Gardner

“It would be all the more gruelling if it was not performed with utter conviction by its cast of four”

“that the relationship between tortured and torturer (Pete Collis, who is dapper, suburban and creepily tender with his victims) is like a twisted love affair. Benario’s resistance and ability to turn the tables on him provides one of the most compelling scenes; the interrogation of Ceridwen Smith’s Ana Libre is another”

WHATSONSTAGE – Amardeep Sohi

“Olga’s Room is a dreary, unsettling piece piqued by harrowing moments”

TIME OUT – Andrjez Lukowski

“Bethan Clark gives a quietly compelling performance as a donnish Olga”

ONE STOP ARTS – Heather Deacon

“the show was difficult to applaud with such a damning and poignant ending, and, I mean that in a good way”

“direction by Samuel Miller is clever”

N16 MAGAZINE – Bryony Hegarty

“David Tushingham’s translation flows seamlessly. This is a powerful and harrowing piece of drama”


“this production is stark, unbearably tense and frightening”

“It sensitively explored themes of madness, perverted desire, power and control. The production stripped away the peace of mind of its audience and revealed the harsh realities of history through a powerful story of these women’s unimaginable hardships”


“Loher’s beautiful writing and Clark’s impressive central performance”

£17 (£12 concessions) – Mondays – Saturdays at 8pm

Matinees 12, 19, 26 January at 3pm

All tickets £12 – Opening performances 9 and 10 January

Pay What You Can Tuesdays – limited and subject to availability