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Rutherford & Son

By Githa Sowerby

Edited for Northern Broadsides by Blake Morrison

Directed by Sir Jonathan Miller and designed by Isabella Bywater
Rutherford & Son  stars the company’s Artistic Director Barrie Rutter in the lead role of John Rutherford.

★★★★ The Guardian

★★★★ The Times

★★★★ Daily Telegraph

★★★★ whatsonstage

Rutherford & Son is again a must-see, worth-debating event. –
The Daily Telegraph (Dominic Cavendish)

Miller’s production is beautifully attentive to the play’s richness of ideas and complexity of moods –
Daily Telegraph (Dominic Cavendish)

Barrie Rutter was born to play the role of Rutherford –
The Guardian (Alfred Hickling)

A superb production – whatsonstage (Michael Coveney)


Your father is a control freak The family business is a millstone round your neck Home feels like a prison And yet you have dreams

This powerful drama written and set in the North of England, 1912, is an unflinching portrayal of an industrial Edwardian family on the brink of collapse. John Rutherford is a tyrannical patriarch, blind to the hopes and feelings of his family. The success of the family-owned glass works, Rutherford & Son, takes precedence over everything … even happiness.
In a household run on fear cracks begin to appear. The emotional pitch builds up like a pressure cooker. The dramatic voltage intensifies as Rutherford’s absolute authority is challenged and a catastrophic family mutiny begins to unfold, threatening to destroy his world and his factory.Ranked by the National Theatre as one of the Top One Hundred Plays of the Century, there are few dramas as deeply human, uncompromising and immediately rewarding as this. Northern Broadsides, directed for the first time by the renowned director Sir Jonathan Miller, bring its trademark gritty, no nonsense performance style to this astonishing play that sees Artistic Director, Barrie Rutter, taking the role of the imperious John Rutherford.

“One of the nation’s most acclaimed and fiercely intelligent directors.”   BBC NEWS

“One of the top one hundred plays of the century.”  National Theatre poll

Nicholas Shaw (A Provincial Life, National Theatre of Wales and John Fisher in Land Girls, BBC)
as John Rutherford Jr
Andrew Grose (Rainman, English Theatre Frankfurt)
as Richard Rutherford
Sara Poyzer (Othello, Northern Broadsides)
as Janet
Kate Anthony (Pam Hobsworth in Coronation Street)
as Ann
Catherine Kinsella (We are Three Sisters, Northern Broadsides)
as Mary
Richard Standing (Swallows & Amazons, Bristol Old Vic)
as Martin
Gilly TompkinsGilly Tompkins – as Mrs Henderson.  This is Gilly’s first production for Northern Broadsides.

The production is designed by Isabella Bywater, who has worked regulary with Sir Jonathan, as well as productions for Nicholas Hytner, Deborah Warner and Lucy Bailey. Lighting will be designed by Guy Hoare (Othello, Northern Broadsides)

Set in early 1912, Rutherford & Son tells the story of iron-fisted John Rutherford as he battles the scheming rebellion of his younger son and his daughter’s scandalous love-affair, while fighting to prevent the legacy of the family glassworks from shattering. Tackling timeless issues of family dynamics both at home and in business, this remarkable drama is as relevant today as it was when it was first performed.

Tour dates – Rutherford & Son
Spring Tour 2013

The Viaduct, Halifax.
8th to 16th February 2013

The Dukes, Lancaster
19th to 23rd February 2013

Oxford Playhouse
26th Feb to 2nd March 2013

Hull Truck Theatre
5th to 9th March 2013

New Vic, Newcastle under Lyme
12th to 16th March 2013

The Rose, Kingston upon Thames
19th to 23rd March 2013

Watford Palace Theatre
26th to 30th March 2013

West Yorkshire Playhouse
2nd to 13th April 2013

The Lowry, Salford
16th to 20th April 2013

Stephen Joseph Theatre
23rd to 27th April 2013

Theatre Royal Winchester
30th April to 4th May 2013

Yvonne Arnaud, Guildford
14th to 18th May 2013

Liverpool Playhouse
21st to 25th May 2013

York Theatre Royal
28th May to 1st June 2013

Rutherford flyer