The Hothouse

written by Harold Pinter

directed by John Donovan


THE HOTHOUSE is a blackly comic farce about the madness, paranoia, lust and suspicion that pervade a mysteriously institution. Throughout the play, Pinter fuses tragedy and farce, terror and nonsense in a unique mix that is something chilling, sometimes bewildering, yet always outrageously funny.

There is no rest for the weary Roote, a pompous ex-colonel who is teetering between sanity and senility. Today of all days, he has learned that patient 6457 has mysteriously died within the facility while patient 6459 has just given birth to a baby, presumably fathered by a member of the staff. The bearer of this bad news is the quietly sinister Gibbs who is charged with investigating these serious matters.


Harold Pinter

Born in 1930, Harold Pinter was a Nobel Prize-winning English playwright, screenwriter, actor and director. Regarded as one of the most influential modern British dramatists, Pinter’s writing career spanned more than fifty years. His most well-known works include The Caretaker, The Homecoming and Betrayal.

 The term ‘Pinteresque’ has entered the English language as a means to describe the characteristics of his work –unpredictable dialogue whereby there are implications of threat produced through colloquial language, apparent triviality and long pauses.


John Donovan

Currently a third year English and History student in University College Cork. John has directed twice with UCC Dramat – firstly with John Millington Synge’s Deirdre of the Sorrows followed by an adaptation of August Strindberg’s Miss Julie.

Additionally, he has participated in numerous productions under the guise of stage management and dramaturgy.

Outside of the college, John has been a member of both Strive Theatre and No Kissin’ Ensemble, working as dramaturge for their productions of In Light of Salt Rings They Drew and The Storehouse respectively.