Jermyn Street Theatre
Shackleton’s Carpenter


Written by Gail Louw

Shackleton’s Carpenter, Harry McNish, was the only man who challenged The Boss on the ice floes of Antarctica.

Shackleton’s Endurance sank in Antarctica, leaving him and his crew of 27 stranded. McNish, brilliant carpenter and shipwright, defied Shackleton, but went all the way with him and played an absolutely vital role in ensuring all 28 were saved.

For all his bravery and ingenuity, McNish was one of the very few who were never awarded the Polar Medal. His health impaired by the experience, he emigrated to New Zealand where his condition worsened, and he could no longer work. Now, alone and destitute, one still night on the dockside, he challenges The Boss one last time. In his fevered mind he relives the Endurance expedition, pitting himself against Shackleton and plagued by the ghosts of his past.
How did he antagonise the hero of Antarctica?  How does he come to terms with it?

‘Louw’s writing is outstanding. Rennie’s performance is a mesmerising tour-de-force’.  (Eastbourne Herald)

★ ★ ★ ★ ’90 minutes of riveting storytelling … a stunning performance’ (Surrey Advertiser)

Gail Louw is a multi-award winning playwright and her plays are performed throughout the world. Her play Duwayne, won Best New Play at Brighton Fringe 2014.  Blonde Poisonhas been produced internationally winning an Argus Angel for Artistic Excellence in 2012, Best of the Fest at the San Francisco Fringe 2016 and was the flagship production at the Hilton Arts Festival in South Africa.

Tony Milner has had a long career in the theatre as an actor, director and since 1979 as a producer and director with his company New Vic Productions. Shackleton’s Carpenter was the second last play he directed before his death in 2015 and this production is dedicated to his memory.

Malcolm Rennie has appeared in over 20 West End shows including Catch my Soul, She Stoops to Conquer,
The Good Companions, Salad Days, The Price, The Cabinet Minister,Lady Windermere’s Fan, The Chiltern Hundreds, Hard Times and many more. Television and film credits include: Midsomer Murders, Taggart, Ransom, 
Pride and Prejudice, The Lenny Henry Show, Sunny Stories, The Accountant, Monarch of the Glen and most recently Hysteria, Coronation Street, Sherlock, and 4 series of Mr Selfridge as Fraser the family butler.

Show Times

Monday to Saturday 7.30pm Saturday matinees 3.30pm


£30.00 full price, Concessions £20.00 for Seniors, Students (ID required), Theatre Unions,
Unemployed/Access. 100 tickets @£10 available for Under 30s – only until 10th August.
All tickets £30 only after 10th August