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Historia presents:

Fire and Phoenix

A new play by Kate Glover to mark the 350th anniversary of the Great Fire of London.

The Trustees and company are saddened at the news of the sudden and untimely death of Tania Foley, who played with such energy

and conviction in Historia's recent performance of Fire and Phoenix, and express their heartfelt condolences to her family and fellow artists.

   Performances       Photos     Flier    Reviews (updated)    Press Release      Synopsis 

The play opens in the bakery of Thomas Farynor, King's Baker, just before midnight on 1 September 1666.  It's a swelteringly hot night.  There has been no rain for months.  Thomas assures his daughter that he has checked the fires...

The fire starts within hours; for three days it rages terrifyingly, helped by a ferocious East wind.  Lord Mayor Bludworth is useless.  Samuel Pepys takes practical measures, and liaises with the King, Charles II.  The people lose everything and camp out at Moorfields.  Foreigners and 'papists' are blamed for the fire and so are ferociously attacked.  People are hysterical.  St Paul's burns: a vision of Hell.

A Frenchman is hanged for starting the fire, but was he really guilty?  What about Farynor?  Pepys has his suspicions...

Despite the toll of 89 churches and 1300 houses destroyed, and 200,000 people made homeless, Christopher Wren, in a moving final scene with Pepys, has a strong sense of hope, and believes that London, like the Phoenix, will rise from the ashes.

Earlier Historia Productions include: 

Magna Carta (2015), the dramatic story of the struggle between King John and his rebel barons.

Queen Anne (2014), a play about the life and troubled reign of the last Stuart monarch. Pictures

The Sound of Breaking Glass (2012-13), a play by Sally Sheringham, covering the life and conflicts of a family from 1908 to 1921 through the Suffragette movement and the First World War.

Judenfrei (2010-11), a touching play about the sufferings of two Jewish lawyers and their families in 1938 Berlin.

An African's Blood (Tour, 2007-8), chronicling the epic journey through Parliament of Wilberforce's law to end the slave trade, and touching on some chilling contemporary parallels.

Five Eleven (Tour, 2005), a play about the gunpowder plot of November 1605.

Evelina(2004),an adaptation from the novel by Fanny Burney.

A Passionate Englishman (1997 and 2000), based on the life of William Penn and set in the form of a dialogue between Penn and Samuel Pepys.




Updated 16 January 2017