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Following official government advice theatres are currently closed to help slow the spread of coronavirus. For more information on cancelled performances click here.


First Published 16 July 2014, Last Updated 16 July 2014

What’s it all about?

The recession has hit, and Emily and Oliver have downsized to the north to live with “the real people”, start an art cooperative and work freelance from the garden. When they invite their neighbours Alan and Dawn over for an evening of olives and conversation, hilarity ensues as the organic anchovies go down like a lead balloon and Emily’s socialist debate is met with blank faces.

Don’t be fooled by this sweeping description, however. What starts out as a simple satirical comedy about a clash of classes soon becomes something far more substantial as Torben Betts’ hugely witty piece reveals a series of twists and turns that have the audience moving from tears of laughter to just tears with its unexpectedly heart-wrenching second act.

Who’s in it?

The foursome from Ellie Jones’ original Orange Tree Theatre production joyfully reunites for its transfer. Laura Howard is brilliant as the brittle Emily: a domineering matriarch who feels morally betrayed by her husband joining Labour and whose neuroticism has reach such levels as to cause even the guinea pigs to be anxious. Samantha Seager gives a moving performance as Emily’s more complex than first thought polar opposite Dawn. Darren Strange is poignantly hilarious as the browbeaten Oliver who becomes an unlikely cat murderer, while Daniel Copeland is both heart-warming and infuriating as the beer-swilling, cheery Alan whose inability to listen and look further than the next England game has devastating consequences.  

What should I look out for?

Sam Dowson’s gloriously bourgeois set, filled with Emily’s abstract art and miniature Birkenstocks for the children frequently mentioned but never seen. Its walls are streaked with Farrow & Ball paint samples and a variety of Buddhist trinkets take pride of place on the reclaimed wood furniture that are later revealed to be excellent hiding places for a sneaky bottle of Bordeaux … or two… or three…   

In a nutshell?

Torben Betts’ hilarious comedy may draw you in with its rare laugh-out-loud script, but it sustains with unexpectedly moving twists and a deeper exploration of happiness, discontentment and the grey areas between.

What’s being said on Twitter?

@adamski1974 Brilliant night @St_JamesTheatre for Invincible seeing @CopelandDan. Excellent play and pin sharp performances. Must see.

@RobiMax 1st Night of ‘Invincible’ at St James Theatre last night – Brilliantly funny play, brilliant cast. Come see it!!

Will I like it?

Torben Betts is continually likened to Alan Ayckbourn and Mike Leigh, and justifiably so. His writing is clever, poignant without being overly emotional, fiercely witty and spot-on observant. Forget the stand-ups at the Edinburgh Festival, you need look no further than the St James Theatre for your comedy fix this summer.

Invincible is playing until 9 August. You can book tickets through the St James Theatre’s website.


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We are now cancelling all performances up until and including 31 May 2020 to help us process existing bookings whilst we wait for further clarity from the government in terms of when we will be able to reopen.

We are so sorry that in these testing and difficult times you are not able to enjoy the show you have booked for and hope the following helps clarify next steps in respect of your tickets .

There is nothing that you need to do if your performance has been cancelled, but we do ask for your patience.

If you have booked directly with the theatre or show website for an affected performance, please be assured that they will contact you directly to arrange an exchange for a later date, a credit note/voucher or a refund. If you have booked via a ticket agent they will also be in contact with you directly.

We are processing in strict date order of performance, so you are likely to be contacted after the date you were due to go to the theatre. However, we want to reassure you that you will be contacted, and your order will be processed, but please do bear with us.

We’d like to thank everyone who has been patient and kind in dealing with their ticket providers so far and we are sorry that we cannot process your order as quickly as we would like.

Please do not contact your credit card company as that will slow the process down and put an additional burden on our box office and ticket agent teams.

In order for us to serve our audiences the best we can, please do not get in touch with your point of sale if you have booked for performances after 31 May. Please be reassured that if we have to cancel future performances you will be directly contacted by your theatre or ticket provider. Our producers continue to plan for all eventualities dependent on the individual needs of their shows and we will provide further updates on specific shows as and when they become available.

We look forward to welcoming you back into our theatres as soon as we are allowed to resume performances. In the meantime stay safe and healthy.