Mother Courage and Her Children

Full-Length Play  /  4w, 8m

Mother Courage was first performed in Zurich in 1941 and is usually seen as Brecht's greatest work. Remaining a powerful indictment of war and social injustice, it is an epic drama set in the seventeenth century during the Thirty Years' War. The plot follows the resilient Mother Courage who survives by running a commissary business that profits from all sides. As the war claims all of her children in turn, the play poignantly demonstrates that no one can profit from the war without being subject to its terrible cost also.

Mother Courage and Her Children

  • Cast Size
    Cast Size
    4w, 8m
  • SubGenre
    Adaptations (Stage & Screen)


This translation by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tony Kushner is contemporary and lively, with accessible and humour language, an easy conversational flow, sympathetic, understandable characters and humour. Kushner makes a classic play which is notoriously difficult to perform both stage and reader friendly. It was staged at the National Theatre directed by Deborah Warner and starring Fiona Shaw in September 2009.


“'Tony Kushner's sparky new translation'” – Michael Billington, Guardian, 27.9.09

“'Tony Kushner's bouncy new translation of Brecht's greatest play'” – Paul Taylor, Independent, 29.9.09

“'The translation, by American playwright Tony Kushner, is fast-moving, articulate, and reaches the heart of Brecht's reasonings'” – Paul Callan, Daily Express, 28.9.09

“'Tony Kushner's wry, witty translation'” – Fiona Mountford, Evening Standard, 28.9.09

“'Tony Kushner's translation is zesty'” – Kate Bassett, Independent on Sunday, 4.10.09

Licensing & Materials

  • Minimum Fee: £70 per performance plus VAT when applicable.


Available Formats:


Bertolt Brecht

Bertolt Brecht (1898-1956), playwright, poet and director, was born in Augsburg, Germany in February 1898. He established himself as a playwright during the 1920s and early 1930s with plays such as Baal, Man is Man, The Threepenny Opera and The Mother. In 1933, as Hitler came ...
View full profile

Tony Kushner

Tony Kushner’s plays include Angels in America; Hydriotaphia, or the Death of Dr. Brown; The Illusion, adapted from the play by Pierre Cornelle; Slavs!; A Bright Room Called Day; Homebody/Kabul; Caroline, or Change, a musical with composer Jeanine Tesori; and The Intelligent ...
View full profile


Now Playing

Community Experiences