Maltings Arts Theatre’s resident theatre company, OVO, will present a double bill of short plays by Olivier award-winning playwright Simon Stephens

The contemporary monologues tell of love, family, devastating heartache, violence and crushing guilt.

Simon Stephens is perhaps best known for his stage adaptation of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, which enjoyed a four-year run in the West End.

Director Andrew Margarison says: “You’d be hard-pressed to find a better playwright today than Simon Stephens. These two distinct monologues demonstrate Stephens’ astonishing talent, with such simplicity and truth, that when the opportunity arose to direct them I was delighted. 

“Both monologues explore trauma and the very human reactions we experience, entirely without artifice or pandering to convention. Audiences deserve to hear his words, and they deserve to see the two extremely talented performers that I’ve been lucky enough to be directing the last few weeks.

Sea Wall was critically acclaimed when it premiered in London in 2008 and developed a cult following when released as a film starring Andrew Scott of Sherlock Fame.

 Alex speaks of the love he has for his wife and his daughter, his city, to which he is returning, and his job. He tells the story of a visit to his father-in-law in the South of France and speaks of photography, religious beliefs and even the bottom of the sea, but as with the force of a wave, the force of life can come crashing down on you.

T5, the second theatre production, is the story of one woman’s guilt at having not intervened when witnessing a violent and brutal attack on a teenager. The visions of violence in her head combine with the dirt, darkness and roar of London, her dreams and nightmares and the ancient and modern lights of the city; a city she is as desperate to leave behind as her shame and regret.

The Maltings Arts Theatre, Level 2, The Maltings, St Albans, AL1 3HL, March 9 to 11, 8pm. Details: 0333 666 3366