Neilson's tragi-comic play about the bizarre fantasies and daydreams of a man during an average day delighted audiences at the Edinburgh International Festival in 2006 and was published for its English premiere in June 2011.
Renowned for his pioneering, ground-breaking and imaginative new work, Anthony Neilson is one of the most prominent voices in British theatre. His plays include Penetrator, Heredity, The Lying Kind and The Censor, which won the Writers Guild and Time Out Award (all for the Royal Court). His other work includes Edward Gant's Amazing Feats of Loneliness (Headlong Theatre), Stitching (The Traverse, The Bush - Time Out Off West End Award) and Normal (Edinburgh Festival). His films include The Debt Collector and Deeper Still.
If Waiting for Godot is a play in which, as one critic had it,
"nothing happens, twice", Realism is a play in which nothing
happens, spectacularly. Anthony Neilson's comedy, previously seen
at the Edinburgh Festival in 2006, is a tale of inertia and of
daydream - two potential ways to lose an audience for the price of
one. But the result is wildly inventive, always entertaining, and
ultimately rather moving too... The fireworks are fun. But Realism
has an emotional undertow that makes it more than just a novelty
item. -- Dominic Maxwell * The Times *
Anthony Neilson's ingenious play...invades the prosaic kitchen-sink existence of its troubled, bachelor-hero...with all kinds of surreal, day dreamy carry-on. -- Dominic Cavendish * Daily Telegraph *
Anthony Neilson's surprisingly moving musings on mundanity, the absurdities of modern life and "the accumulation of losses" that we must carry with us as we age is a sparky and often scurrilous 80 minutes that, in worming inside one's head, worms inside our own. -- Lyn Gardner * Guardian *
An exquisite tragi-comedy for our times . . . It should strike a chord with anyone who's ever struggled to make sense of the modern world and their place in it. An absolute joy from start to finish * Herald *