Exploring the greatest new and classic plays




059 – Paradise Now! , by Margaret Perry

Mar 2, 2023 | Podcast Episodes | 0 comments

The subject of this episode is a scintillating new play written by Irish playwright, Margaret Perry, which as we recorded our conversation had recently completed an acclaimed run at the Bush Theatre in London. When it opened in December 2022 the Telegraph said that Paradise Now! “might well be the best new play of the year”.

Paradise Now! brings together a group of women who sign up to a pyramid selling scheme that promotes a range of body and home oils under the brand banner ‘Paradise’. The so-called “Essential” oils offer balm to a myriad of stresses in modern life, while also promising the team that sell them both wealth and a nurturing community of supportive colleagues. ‘Paradise’ is a parody of the well-being industry and of corporate culture generally, and it is a very funny and incisive satire. It is also an affecting exploration of private ambition and the search for self-worth and connection in our fractured world of social media and short-term success. The women who join the sales scheme are themselves looking for cures to challenges in their own lives, and the road to Paradise Now! is not so sure and smooth.

I’m delighted to be joined by Margaret Perry to talk about her perceptive, funny and moving new play.


Margaret Perry

Margaret Perry, like some of the characters in her new play, is originally from Cork in Ireland, and now lives in London. Her debut play, Porcelain, was picked from the unsolicited script pile and produced by the Abbey Theatre in Dublin in 2018. Porcelain masterfully interweaves the story of a new mother in London in 2017 battling post-natal depression, with the famous 19th century Irish tale of Bridget Cleary, whose husband murdered her claiming that she had been taken by fairies.

Her second play Collapsible started life at the Vaults Festival in London in 2019, going on to win awards at both the Edinburgh and Dublin Fringe Festivals, followed by a successful run at the Bush in 2020.


Recommended Play

Margaret recommended John by Annie Baker.


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