Ferdinand Bruckner's

Pains of Youth

Adapted by Martin Crimp

Ferdinand Bruckner
Adapted by Martin Crimp

Josh Seymour

The Linbury Theatre

Wednesday 7 June at 7:45pm
Friday 9 June at 7:45pm
Saturday 10 June at 2:15pm
Monday 12 June at 7:45pm*
Tuesday 13 June at 2:15pm

The running time is approximately 1 hour 56 minutes with a 15 minute interval.

*This will be a relaxed performance. Find out more.

About the show

Promiscuous, pitiless and bored, six sexually entangled medical students restlessly wander in and out of a boarding house, cramming, drinking, taunting, spying. Freder sets about savagely experimenting with the young, pretty maid, with half an eye on his former lover Desiree, a wild, disillusioned aristocrat. Petrell abandons Marie for the ruthless underdog Irene. Marie doesn't waste any time weeping - Desiree wants her.

Bourgeois existence or suicide. There are no other choices. Vienna, 1923. A discontented post-war generation diagnose youth to be their sickness and do their best to destroy it. 

Martin Crimp was born in 1956 and began writing for theatre in the 1980s. His plays include: When we have sufficiently tortured each other (2019), Men Asleep (2018), The Rest Will Be Familiar To You From Cinema (2013, voted by Germany’s Theater heute best foreign play of the year), In the Republic of Happiness (2012), Play House (2012), The City (2008), Fewer Emergencies (2005, receiving Italy’s Premio Ubu), Cruel and Tender (2004, written for director Luc Bondy), Face to the Wall (2002), The Country (2000), Attempts on Her Life (1997), The Treatment (1993, winner of the John Whiting Award), Getting Attention (1992), No One Sees the Video (1991), Play with Repeats (1989), Dealing with Clair (1988) and Definitely the Bahamas (1987).

His translations of plays include Botho Strauss’s Gross und Klein (2012), Ionesco’s Rhinoceros (2007), Marivaux’s The False Servant (2004) and The Triumph of Love (1999), Genet’s The Maids (1999), Ionesco’s The Chairs (1997), Koltès’s Roberto Zucco (1997), a new version of Chekhov’s The Seagull (2006), and adaptations of Edmond Rostand's Cyrano de Bergerac (2019) and Molière’s The Misanthrope (1996).

His work has been produced in the UK by the Royal Shakespeare Company, the National Theatre, Almeida, Young Vic, Barbican, Théâtre de Complicité, the Orange Tree and the Royal Court, and has been translated into many languages and widely produced abroad at venues including the Piccolo Teatro, Milan, the Sala Beckett, Barcelona, the Vienna Festival, the Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord, the Théâtre de la Ville, Berlin’s Schaubühne, Deutsches Schauspielhaus Hamburg, and at the Festival d’Automne in Paris, which presented four of his works in their 2006 season, including his first text for opera, Into the Little Hill, written for George Benjamin. His second collaboration with Benjamin, Written on Skin, had its world premiere at the Aix-en-Provence Festival in 2012, and the third, Lessons in Love and Violence, opened at London’s Royal Opera House in 2018.

In 2020 he was awarded the Nyssen-Bansemer Theatre Prize.

Josh Seymour was the Runner-Up for the RTST Sir Peter Hall Director Award 2018. He was Resident Assistant Director at the Donmar Warehouse from 2014-15 and won Best Director at the 2016 Off-West End Awards for his production of Tennessee Williams’ One Arm at Southwark Playhouse. Josh graduated in 2010 from the University of Cambridge with a First in English Literature and was a Finalist for the JMK Award in 2012.

Contains strong and offensive language, sexual references, sexual content, descriptions and depictions of violent acts, mental health disorders, sexism, misogyny, alcohol abuse and depiction of suicide. References to death, psychological, emotional, sexual and physical abuse.

Photos: SRTaylor Photography

Creative Team

* LAMDA staff member or visiting artist

Josh Seymour*

Charlotte Henery*

Assistant Director
Saniya Saraf

Movement Directors
Rachel-Leah Hosker*
Bex Smith*

Lighting Designer
Abhinav Mishra

Sound Designer
Summer Collier

Voice Director
Gurkiran Kaur*

Costume Supervisor
Caitlyn Keaney*

Wardrobe Assistant
Daniella B-G*


Ayse Babahan

Kitty Castledine

Rosa Collier

Niamh Marie Smith

Rohan Rakhit

Kieton Saunders-Browne

Michael Tcherepashenets

Production Team

* LAMDA staff member or visiting artist

Stage Manager on the Book
Kit Fowler

Technical Stage Manager
Helena Fitzgerald

Production Manager
Nic Donithorn*

Chief LX
Ash Orhan-Pennell

Production Sound Engineer
Jacob Eckardt