Alan Ayckbourn’s hilarious trilogy THE NORMAN CONQUESTS is a comic masterpiece of three parallel plays, all following one very dysfunctional household on a summer weekend in an English manor.

ROUND AND ROUND THE GARDEN,
LIVING TOGETHER and
TABLE MANNERS.

See one, or better see them all, in any order.

★★★★ The Guardian, ★★★★ The Daily Telegraph, ★★★★½ ArtsHub, ★★★★ Stage Noise.

Overview

Norman doesn’t exactly look like one of the world’s great lovers. There’s no square jaw or twinkle in his eye. Instead he has a beard that wanders aimlessly, a penchant for puffa puffa rice and the libido of an oversexed sheepdog. Over the course of one weekend in the English country, Norman has a simple mission: to disrupt, inspire and make his extended family happy. Whether they like it or not.

He’s arranged to meet Annie, stuck at home and tired of looking after her cantankerous invalid mother, for an illicit weekend away. But there’s a hitch – Annie is the sister of Norman’s to-the-point and career-driven wife Ruth. And now her oblivious brother Reg and his controlling wife Sarah have arrived to help. Add the local vet Tom and the scene is set for one hell of a weekend.

Alan Ayckbourn’s award-winning trilogy THE NORMAN CONQUESTS is a comic masterpiece of three parallel plays, each tracing the unravelling of Norman and his flailing romantic ambitions from a slightly different, and often simultaneous, perspective – TABLE MANNERS from the dining room, LIVING TOGETHER from the sitting room and ROUND AND ROUND THE GARDEN from the bramble-filled garden.

A rare treat of theatrical ingenuity, the three plays tell and retell the turbulently entertaining story with increasing nuance and humour as offstage conversations and antics from one play appear onstage in another. See one, or better see them all, in any order, for the complete experience.

★★★★ “Startlingly clever and all the better for seeing in one go… The Norman Conquests is up there with the British classics The Office and Fawlty Towers.”
The Guardian

★★★★ Straight up comedy gold. Recommended.”
Stage Noise

THE NORMAN TRILOGY

ROUND AND ROUND THE GARDEN

The garden. Saturday 5.30pm. A cancelled tryst and a cat up a tree.

2 Nov – 12 Jan

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LIVING TOGETHER

The sitting room. Saturday 6.30pm. Board games and much too much dandelion wine.

26 Oct – 12 Jan

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TABLE MANNERS

The dining room. Saturday 6pm. A biscuit fight, a cold meal and a cold–shoulder.

19 Oct – 12 Jan

Best availability from 27 Dec

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Ticket Prices
PREVIEWS & WEEKDAY MATINEESALL EVENINGS & WEEKEND MATINEES
Full Price$69$73
Seniors Card$65$70
Pensioner$61$66
Groups 10-19$65$70
Groups 20+$61$66
Club 30$43$43
Full-Time Student$35$35
MEAA/AWG$38$38
School Groups$25$25
Reviews

★★★★ "Startlingly clever and all the better for seeing in one go… The Norman Conquests is up there with the British classics The Office and Fawlty Towers." The Guardian

★★★★½ "As for this thrilling production, the performances are a joy to behold....The direction itself was masterful (Mark Kilmurry)...I recommend you get along to these shows for a night of good feeling and fun." ArtsHub

★★★★ "A masterpiece of playwriting... Kilmurry has gathered a fine cast and directs them to plumb the hurt, frustration and pathos beneath the comic surface." The Daily Telegraph

★★★★ "The Norman Conquests is one of Alan Ayckbourn’s greatest achievements... It’s also a great achievement for Mark Kilmurry as director and for the company of actors who effortlessly handle the huge undertaking... Straight up comedy gold. Recommended" Stage Noise

"Each play contains a kind of virtuoso comic set-piece, and in Table Manners it's Sarah's seating plan for dinner going so awry as to turn to mud a meal for which she had such high hopes. But then Ayckbourn's gentle satire is about what actually happens while people are busy hoping." The Sydney Morning Herald

"This Mark Kilmurry-directed production is a cut above, with Ayckbourn’s somewhat heightened portraits coming across as fleshy and fully human." Audrey Journal

"This revival, directed by Mark Kilmurry, is bright and bubbly, a compelling jaunt back in time... by an excellent, and tireless, uniformly captivating cast." Suzy Goes See

"Directed by Mark Kilmurry, the plays are beautifully revealed and 'hum' along with all the confidence of a well oiled machine. The dramaturgical skill of the comic and dramatic formula of the writer's cleverness is immaculately understood. Mr Kilmurry has also selected a wonderfully accurate group of actors who have created real, vulnerable people, and who then, instinctively, have let their comic instincts stretch to the needs of the writing for it to reward the audience with six hours of blissful laughter, and an ultimate identification of compassion for these hapless, ordinary people, who, if we dare to contemplate, are much like ourselves and our extended families, extended or close." Kevin Jackson's Theatre Diary

★★★★ "Positively Chekhovian, luxuriating in the tiny domestic deaths that happen daily. In Table Manners, a fraught dinner is undermined when family members refuse to sit in their allocated places, leading to a dance of musical chairs so funny I wept." The Guardian

"These three plays — designed to be seen in any order — stand as the peak of the author’s achievements... a brilliant, Chekhovian comedy of family manners. See them and be amazed." Stage Whispers

Cast & Creatives
Alan Ayckbourn

Alan Ayckbourn

PLAYWRIGHT

Mark Kilmurry

Mark Kilmurry

Director

Liz Arday

Liz Arday

Assistant Director

Danielle Carter

Danielle Carter

Cast - Sarah

Rachel Gordon

Rachel Gordon

Cast - Ruth

Brian Meegan

Brian Meegan

Cast - Reg

Sam O’Sullivan

Sam O’Sullivan

Cast - Tom

Yalin Ozucelik

Yalin Ozucelik

Cast - Norman

Matilda Ridgway

Matilda Ridgway

Annie

Hugh O’Connor

Hugh O’Connor

Set and Costume Designer

Scott Allan

Scott Allan

Lighting Designer

Dani Ironside

Dani Ironside

Stage Manager

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THE NORMAN TRILOGY

ROUND AND ROUND THE GARDEN

The garden. Saturday 5.30pm. A cancelled tryst and a cat up a tree.

2 Nov – 12 Jan

BOOK NOW

LIVING TOGETHER

The sitting room. Saturday 6.30pm. Board games and much too much dandelion wine.

26 Oct – 12 Jan

BOOK NOW

TABLE MANNERS

The dining room. Saturday 6pm. A biscuit fight, a cold meal and a cold–shoulder.

19 Oct – 12 Jan

Best availability from 27 Dec

BOOK NOW

Trilogy Day – 3 plays, 1 day

Why not make a day of it and enjoy all three of THE NORMAN CONQUESTS on one of our trilogy days?  With their overlapping stories and ensemble of actors, we couldn’t resist showcasing all three plays, playing back-to-back on four special Saturdays.

Spend a whole day with Norman and experience Alan Ayckbourn’s clever writing and brilliance all in one sitting.

Turn your trilogy day into a fabulous theatre and dining experience. +DISCOVER MORE

THE NORMAN TRILOGY DAY
1pm TABLE MANNERS (Approx. 2hrs 5mins incl. interval)
4.30pm LIVING TOGETHER (Approx. 2hrs incl. interval)
8.15pm ROUND AND ROUND THE GARDEN (Approx. 2hrs incl. interval)

Saturday, 10 November 2018 | LIMITED SEATS 

Saturday, 24 November 2018 | LIMITED SEATS

Saturday, 29 December 2018 | SOLD OUT (Please note: the order on this trilogy day is: 1pm ROUND AND ROUND THE GARDEN, 4.30pm TABLE MANNERS, 8.15pm LIVING TOGETHER)

Saturday, 12 January 2019 | SOLD OUT

To book, please call Box Office on 02 9929 0644

PHOTO GALLERY
WATCH THE VIDEO

DOWNLOAD THE PROGRAM

THE NORMAN CONQUESTS program is filled to the brim with exciting information including a director’s note from Artistic Director Mark Kilmurry, writer’s note from Alan Ayckbourn, synopsis, photos of the cast and more!

DOWNLOAD PROGRAM

FAQ

What order should I see the plays in?

There is no correct order to see The Norman Conquests trilogy. The trilogy has tended to be staged in the order of TABLE MANNERS, LIVING TOGETHER and ROUND AND ROUND THE GARDEN but this is not a preferred choice of the playwright and not required to enjoy and understand the show.

What is the chronological order of the plays?

There is no correct ‘chronological order’ of the plays as much of the action happens simultaneously (one play shows what is happening in the dining room at the same time that another play shows what is happening in the living room). ROUND AND ROUND THE GARDEN starts with the earliest scene but ends with the latest.

Do I have to see them all?

Each play can be seen individually. There is no denying that the experience is richer for seeing all three plays, but it is not necessary and the story of the weekend is perfectly entertaining and clear in each play.