Review: Mother Courage And Her Children

Mother Courage And Her Children – Southwark Playhouse until 9th December


Review by Charlotte Smith

Mother Courage is a deep, interesting play, of one mothers struggle to keep hold of her two sons and daughter during the war, with only their wagon for support. Using this small, intimate theatre for the setting was a good idea as it gave across a more hazardous setting. It allows the cast to bring the audience into their surroundings and feelings, using blankets either side of the stage hovering above the entrances.

Josie Lawrence gives a great performance as Mother Courage despite the heartache she endured on a daily basis. Giving such a poignant performance you feel like her “On stage” children were her own the way she protects them. She then has one son taken into battle whilst being tricked by a soldier.  Courage has spent years protecting him and for him not to be under her control and care anymore couldn’t have been easy.

Photo Credit Scott Rylander

Mother Courage and her now two children spend years travelling through the night selling goods to keep afloat. This is a hard-hitting show with everyone facing sheer hell, terror and uncertainty as to what each day will bring. Mother Courage protects her children as any mother would which makes it heart breaking to see her fight back the tears when the generals bring her son’s body in for her to identify.

Throughout the play you do feel as though you are in the camp with the soldiers feeling what they felt. The priest trying to rescue the wounded people of the latest war using anything and everything to support them whilst Courage wants to look after herself, claiming she wants war so she can make a living selling goods for money.

This production runs on high energy from cast and ensemble, some who double and triple at roles throughout the show and who I take my hat off to – all did a splendid job and it was a mighty fine show.  The show in itself was extremely hard-hitting and a good watch despite being harrowing at times. It’s still relevant today. The fear and uncertainty we can all potentially face, with loved ones fighting in wars, in different countries or even home based challenges with terrorism ever present – bravo to everyone involved in this production.


Mother Courage And Her Children

By Bertolt Brecht

Translated by Tony Kushner

Music by Duke Special

Director Hannah Chissick

Musical Supervisor and Arranger

David Randall

Set & Costume Designer Barney George

Lighting Designer Robbie Butler

Sound Designer Patrick Ball



77-85 Newington Causeway

London SE1 6BD


2 November – 9 December

Monday – Saturday at 7.30pm


Tuesday & Saturday

at 3.00pm


Full price £20

Concessions £16

(Monday-Wednesday evenings and

Tuesday and Saturday matinees)

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