Chekhov’s First Play


“I’m having absolutely nothing to do with the theatre or the human race. They can all go to hell.”

– Anton Chekhov

During the turmoil of the Russian Revolution in 1917, Maria Chekhov, Anton’s sister, placed many of her late brother’s manuscripts and papers in a safety deposit box in Moscow.

In 1921 Soviet scholars opened the box, and discovered a play. The title page was missing. The play they found has too many characters, too many themes, too much action. All in all, it’s generally dismissed as unstageable. Like life.

Dead Centre was formed in 2012 in Dublin. They are Bush Moukarzel, Ben Kidd and producer Matt Smyth. Associate artists: Adam Welsh, Jason Booher and Ailbhe Wakefield-Drohan.

To date, they have made four projects: Souvenir (2012), (S)quark! (2013), LIPPY (2014: winner of Irish Times Best Production, Fringe First, Herald Angel and OBIE awards) and Chekhov’s First Play.



Direction: Bush Moukarzel, Ben Kidd

Text: Anton Chekhov, Bush Moukarzel and Ben Kidd

With: Liam Carney, Breffni Holahan, Paul Reid, Rebecca O Mara, Clara Simpson, Dylan Tighe

Set Design: Andrew Clancy

Sound Design and Composition: Jimmy Eadie

Lighting Design: Stephen Dodd

Special Effects and On-Stage Design: Grace O' Hara

Costume Design: Saileóg O' Halloran

Producer: Matthew Smyth

Co-commissioned by Battersea Arts Centre and Irish Arts Center, New York

Co-production: Dublin Theatre Festival, Baltoscandal (Rakvere) and TnBA (Bordeaux)

The project was originally co-produced by NXTSTP, with the support of the Culture Programme of the European Union. This show was funded by the Irish Arts Council and the tour is supported by Culture Ireland.


Chekhov's First Play is co produced by Battersea Arts Centre and supported by Culture Ireland.



Premiere: 24.09.2015, Samuel Beckett Centre, Dublin

Duration: 70min

The performance is in English.



9 July  19.30-20.40    BIG HALL    SOLD OUT