A Monkey With Cymbals

Aphra Behn and Nell Gwyn were good friends. One of them the first professional female writer and the other an actress turned royal courtesan, they helped each other find success, despite humble beginnings.


Oranges and Ink takes place at a time when fake news about a ‘Popish Plot’ to kill the King was being used to stir up anti-Catholic feelings. When the public seem more interested in the theatre of politics than the playhouses themselves, how is Aphra to continue making a living from her plays? And what will happen to Nell if the King dies? Can she go back to the stage?


Set in the vibrant and frequently debauched world of Restoration theatre, the play follows the trials and tribulations of two female libertines in an age of intolerance and social upheaval.


Oranges & Ink had a 2 week run at the Tristan Bates theatre in the West End in Spring 2019, and was extended for 1 week at the Hen & Chickens Theatre in Islington due to popular demand. There was a short tour which included New Wimbledon Studio and Stafford Gatehouse.  The show  recently streamed in the Off Online Fringe Festival 2020.


**** Close Up Culture                    **** Plays to See

**** Breaking the Fourth Wall     **** Remote Goat

**** Phoenix FM                              **** Independent Catholic    




Director: Alex Pearson

Writer: Claire Louise Amias

Cast: Sarah Lawrie and Claire Louise Amias

Music arranged by William Summers, performed by The Lovekyn Consort


This is an A Monkey With Cymbals co-production with And Tomorrow Theatre Co. and Alex Pearson Productions.























Oranges & Ink

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Copyright, all rights reserved 2012                                  

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**** Close Up Culture  

        "A fascinating play from a talented writer"


**** Plays to See 

       "The show is a delight to watch...high-spirited, moving and sparkling"


**** Breaking the Fourth Wall 

        "The chemistry between Lawrie and Amias makes the play so enjoyable"


**** Remote Goat  

       "An excellent play"


**** Phoenix FM

        "Highly entertaining"


**** Independent Catholic News

        "The dialogue is tight and fizzes along"


       Theatre Va Va Voom

        "Funny, intimate and full of insights... Both actors are bright and wickedly funny"


       British Society for Eighteenth Century Studies

       "A charming yet thought-provoking performance... The true chemistry between Lawrie and Amias make the    

        women believable both as individuals and as close friends."

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Photos by Greg Veit Photography