Plays by Nina Raine


Nick Hern Books
Type: Text

Nina Raine's Consent is a play about attitudes towards rape, and how victims of rape are treated by the current British justice system. It was first performed as a co-production with Out of Joint in the Dorfman auditorium of the National Theatre, London, on 4 April 2017 (previews from 28 March).

The plot of Consent revolves around a contentious rape case: a working-class woman, Gayle, alleges that she was raped on the night of her sister’s funeral, while the accused claims that she consented. The barrister acting for the defence, Edward, and his wife, Kitty, are friends with the case’s crown prosecutor, Tim. When Edward and Kitty try to set Tim up with an actress friend, Zara, who’s auditioning for a big legal drama herself, their own marriage comes under strain. Having counselled their best friends Jake and Rachel, also lawyers, through their own rocky patch, Edward and Kitty find themselves in a similar situation. Fraying under the pressures of motherhood, and never having forgiven Edward over a previous indiscretion, Kitty winds up in an affair of her own and, after a fraught argument, she accuses him of rape.

The National Theatre production was directed by Roger Michell and designed by Hildegard Bechtler. It was performed by Adam James, Anna Maxwell Martin, Ben Chaplin, Priyanga Burford, Pip Carter, Heather Craney and Daisy Haggard.

video Consent (NT)

National Theatre
Type: Video

Age recommendation: 15+ (references to rape)

This archive recording was captured on 9th May, 2017.

Why is Justice blind? Is she impartial? Or is she blinkered? Friends take opposing briefs in a rape case. The key witness is a woman whose life seems a world away from theirs. At home, their own lives begin to unravel as every version of the truth is challenged.

Nina Raine’s powerful, painful, funny play sifts the evidence from every side and puts justice herself in the dock.

Consent received its world premiere in a co-production with Out of Joint at the National Theatre in April 2017.

For teacher resources, visit this page.

Jake: Adam James
Kitty: Anna Maxwell Martin
Edward: Ben Chaplin
Tim: Pip Carter
Gayle: Heather Craney
Zara: Daisy Haggard
Rachel: Priyanga Burford

Director: Roger Michell
Writer: Nina Raine
Music: Kate Whitely
Lighting Designer: Rick Fisher
Sound Designer: John Leonard
Costume Designer: Dinah Collin
Set Designer: Hildegard Bechtler


Nick Hern Books
Type: Text

Nina Raine’s debut play is a portrayal of a single woman on the cusp of her thirties. Faced with a myriad of expectations, she finds herself drowning in anxiety about her future.

It’s Bella’s 29th birthday. A select group of friends and former lovers meet for a drink to celebrate. They discuss sex and work and are simultaneously repelled and attracted by each other. Lively banter turns to personal insult as the bar becomes a gender battlefield. However, what they don’t know is that Bella’s father is terminally ill. His cancerous tumour becomes a metaphor for all the things his daughter perceives as wrong with her life – her overpaid but shallow job, her romantic dalliances that end in strife but most of all, the worry that she’s not living up to other people’s expectations.

Set over the course of one raucous evening, the scenes with Bella’s dying father are told in flashback but woven seamlessly into the main action of the play. The characters’ frank discussion about and subsequent enactment of the battle of the sexes struck a chord with theatregoers and critics alike, who hailed Raine as a distinctive new voice.

Having tried and failed to get her play produced by the major theatres, Raine eventually mounted her own production at tiny fringe venue the Old Red Lion Theatre in London in 2006. The play was a big success and transferred to the Trafalgar Studios in the West End before playing at the Brits Off Broadway festival in New York in 2007. Raine was subsequently awarded the Critics’ Circle and the Evening Standard Award for Most Promising Playwright.


Nick Hern Books
Type: Text

Nina Raine's play Stories is a drama about a single woman in her late thirties who is determined to have a child. It was first performed in the Dorfman auditorium of the National Theatre, London, on 18 October 2018 (previews from 10 October).

The play starts with the forty-year-old Anna, a theatre director, having a brief encounter with Felix, an acquaintance who has agreed to donate his sperm. The action then backtracks to explain why Anna broke up with her boyfriend Tom, and to show her arguing with her dad about the merits of online sperm donors. She then embarks on her own journey to see if any of her male friends are prepared to father a child.

An author's note in the script states that 'Many of the characters are doubled – and this is partly the point.'

The National Theatre production was directed by Nina Raine and designed by Jeremy Herbert. It was performed by Claudie Blakley (as Anna), Sam Troughton (as Felix, Tom, Lachlan, Danny, Corin and Rupert), Brian Vernel, Stephen Boxer, Thusitha Jayasundera and Margot Leicester. The Girl was played by Sylvie Erskine, Beau Gadsdon and Katie Simons.

Tiger Country

Nick Hern Books
Type: Text

Nina Raine's Tiger Country is a play that depicts the working lives of a group of doctors and nurses in a busy London hospital. It was first performed at Hampstead Theatre, London, on 14 January 2011. The play was revived, in the rewritten version presented here, at Hampstead Theatre on 8 December 2014.

The play is set in various locations within a major London hospital: the ward, the operating theatre, A&E, the cardiology department, the bladder clinic, the doctors' mess, the consultants' office, and a hospital on-call room. The action moves fluidly between the different locations, with several different storylines overlapping and converging. Vashti is a urology registrar who faces a choice between advancing her career or saving the life of a surgically maltreated aunt. Emily is a new senior house officer who learns the dangers of investing too much care in individual patients. We also see how a cardiologist copes with a lymphoma on his neck, how surgeons have to break the news to patients whose cancer is terminal, and how the private lives of staff are the victims of a punishing work schedule.

The 2011 Hampstead Theatre production was directed by Nina Raine and designed by Lizzie Clachan. It was performed by Hannah Banister, David Cann, Pip Carter, Nason Crone, Sharon Duncan-Brewster, Ruth Everett, Naomi Heffernan, Adam James, Thusitha Jayasundera, Kevin Kamara, Joan Kempson, Henry Lloyd-Hughes, Maggie McCarthy, Nicolas Tennant and Harvey Virdi.

The 2014 Hampstead Theatre production was again directed by Nina Raine and designed by Lizzie Clachan. It was performed by Ruth Everett, Souad Faress, Jenny Galloway, Nick Hendrix, Maxwell Hutcheon, Tricia Kelly, Alastair Mackenzie, Wunmi Mosaku, Shaun Parkes, Luke Thompson, Indira Varma, Alexine Lafaber, Carolin Ott and Rose Riley.


Nick Hern Books
Type: Text

Tribes is a family play about the limitations of communication and the desire to belong.

Billy’s family, like every other, is a club, with its own private language, jokes and rules. You can be as rude as you like, as possessive as you like, as critical as you like. Arguments are an expression of love and you’re meant to love each other more than anyone in the world. But Billy, who is deaf, is the only one who actually listens. Raised without the knowledge of sign language, his perspective changes when he meets and falls in love with Sylvia and decides he finally wants to be heard.

Raine was inspired to write the play after watching a documentary about a deaf couple who expressed hopes that their child would be born deaf. The kernel of the idea of the family as a ‘tribe’ who passed down values and belief systems from one generation to the other took root. In this play, Billy is caught between two warring ‘tribes’ – his family and his newfound relationship with Sylvia, an active member of the deaf community of which Billy has previously not been a part.

Tribes was first performed at the Royal Court Theatre in London in 2010. The play received very positive reviews but was arguably more successful in the US where it enjoyed sell-out runs at the Barrow Street Theater and the Mark Taper Forum. The play received another round of excellent reviews and won the 2012 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Play and the New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award.

audio Tribes

LA Theatre Works
Type: Audio

Billy has been deaf since birth, but his family has never learned sign language. In fact, until he meets Sylvia, who is fluent in ASL, Billy has never in his life been understood by anyone. This critically acclaimed sensation from Nina Raine will awaken all of your senses as it boldly asks some of life’s hardest questions: what is communication and understanding, and can we truly have it—with anyone?

An L.A. Theatre Works full-cast recording, starring Rosalind Ayres, Barry Creyton, Thomas Dellamonica, Russell Harvard, Cerris Morgan-Moyer, Susan Pourfar, Mare Winningham

Directed by Alexis Jacknow and recorded before a live audience by L.A. Theatre Works.

Featuring: Barry Creyton, Thomas Dellamonica, Russell Harvard, Cerris Morgan-Moyer, Susan Pourfar, Mare Winningham

Picture of Nina Raine

© Jack Ladenburg

Nina Raine is a writer and director. Her debut play Rabbit premiered at the Old Red Lion Theatre and transferred to the Trafalgar Studios in 2006. The play was a critical smash and won Raine the Evening Standard and Critics’ Circle Awards for Most Promising Playwright. Her play, Tribes, premiered at the Royal Court Theatre in 2010 before transferring to the off-Broadway Barrow Street Theatre in 2012. It was well received on both sides of the Atlantic and won the 2012 Drama Desk Award and the New York Critics’ Circle Award for Best Play.

Her other work includes an adaptation of The Drunks by the Durnenkov Brothers (RSC, 2009) and Tiger Country (Hampstead Theatre, 2011).