A delicious play about the Zen of dishwashing!

Emmett used to be a high flyer in the City until the financial crisis abruptly changed his life. He was used to dining upstairs amongst the glitterati but today he’s back with a new career – as a dishwasher.

Alongside his new colleagues, dominant self-appointed leader, Dressler, who’s been happily scraping and scrubbing for over 30 years, and the decrepit Moss who’s about ready for retirement, Emmett attacks the endless supply of crockery that descends from above.

In this world of soapsuds and despair, playwright Morris Panych brings wit and humour to their quest for existential meaning.

David Essex returns to the stage, in the role of Dressler, having enjoyed a remarkable career in theatre, films, television, and music.

Morris Panych’s plays have been produced across the UK, Canada and the United States and he is best known for the hugely successful West End production of Auntie and Me starring Alan Davies and Marcia Warren.


“The Dishwashers pulls at the heartstrings and David Essex is perfectly positioned for that”
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Birmingham Mail

“There is a rhythm and musicality to their exchanges that Essex and Makarem fully exploit”
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The Public Reviews

“[A] flavour of Beckett’s sublime slapstick world of the downtrodden clown which is at the heart of his Waiting For Godot, a world where, as here, the under-class fights back.”
Birmingham Post

“Endlessly entertaining and intriguingly inspiring.”
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What’s On Stage

“[David Essex] plays the part of the philosopher/dishwashing taskmaster perfectly”
Birmingham Press

“Reminiscent of the ‘work‘ plays that stemmed from the Court in the 60s. Yet Panych’s play never feels like a reworking; its debates are fresh, full of vitality, and needed.”
Reviews Gate

“The philosophical banter is original and fun. It brims with ideas that might nestle down well with the writing of Pinter, Beckett or Orwell.”
BBC Shropshire

This dark comedy is food for thought.

“This UK premiere of The Dishwashers showcases a modern masterpiece, played here to deeply moving effect. I say don’t miss it.”
Lichfield Live

“Follows on the heavy heels of Pinter and Beckett offset with a lightness of touch and some genuinely funny moments”
Express & Star

“Cleverly written and skilfully delivered”
We Love Bearwood

“Director Nikolai Foster handles the play’s rich vein of dark humour well. There’s lots to make you laugh or smile wryly.”
Bum On A Seat

“An intimate and insightful play”
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Remote Goat

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Behind The Arras

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TSS Reviews

“David Essex is an oasis of calm and control. He brings just the right amount of world weariness to the role, and is in almost every scene, playing each one perfectly.”
Fashion Mommy

Date Time Venue Notes Prices Booking

The HOUSE at The REP

  • Address: Centenary Square, Broad Street, Birmingham, B1 2EP
  • The HOUSE is The REP’s largest auditorium, seating over 800 people. Wheelchair seating is available at the front and midway up on Row L.

    Built on democratic principals with no circle or boxes and with a saucer shaped rake, The HOUSE is designed so that all seats have a great view of the action.

  • Box Office: 0121 236 4455
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