Volcanic Eruptions by Robin Hawdon

volcanic eruptions - a play by robin hawdon

Volcanic Eruptions is a new comedy derived from a play which had a successful tour back in the seventies but failed to find a West End stage big enough to accommodate the huge two storey set. Now completely rewritten with a much simplified set and smaller cast. Pure physical farce in the true Feydeau style, inspired by the Liz Taylor / Richard Burton relationship.

Two of the world’s greatest stars, renowned for their explosive on/off marriage, turn up unexpectedly at their favourite French hotel each with a different lover in tow. Chaos ensues.

Questions arise:-  Can Pierre Laroche, the harrassed hotelier, keep each from knowing that the other is there?   Can his demented staff serve dinner without it ending all over the wall paper?   Can the Times newspaper critic be fooled about what is going on?   Can the volcanic eruptions be prevented before the evening is over?

Required:- an acrobatic cast and a good supply of heart attack pills.


  • PIERRE LAROCHE (proprietor of La Bonne Auberge)
  • LOUIS LAROCHE (his son)
  • OLD GASTON (waiter)
  • JOHN DUDLEY (film star)
  • RACHEL DUDLEY (theatre star)
  • LISA LAMONT (Hollywood actress)
  • BORIS BRAKOWSKI (Russian oligarch)
  • IVOR SAWFOOT (journalist)
  • MADAME LAROCHE (Pierre’s wife – voice off only)


The central reception foyer of a small country hotel somewhere outside London. The hotel is one of those old family-run establishments whose slight air of dilapidation only add to their charm.

Note for foreign producers: The play is set in England but could just as easily be set in their own country, since French restaurateurs and hoteliers are everywhere. (It has already been produced in Germany, Poland, USA, and Canada) Only the hotel staff would have to remain French.