Hay Fever

Author(s): Noël Coward

Noël Coward’s effervescent comedy of bad manners—written in three days when he was 24—is set in a country house in Berkshire.

Judith Bliss is a famous West End actress, technically retired. Husband David churns out romantic novels. Their grown-up children—Simon and Sorel—resolutely refuse to grow up.

The pathologically self-absorbed Blisses invite a quartet of hapless guests for the weekend: a career diplomat, a predatory society girl, a conventional sporty chap and a sweet-natured flapper.

The guests turn out to be cannon fodder in the family’s ongoing solipsistic fantasies. The sociopathic hosts are briefly incredulous when their guests creep away after breakfast.

Performances

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