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100 Plays to Save the World

100 Plays to Save the World

By Elizabeth Freestone & Jeanie O'Hare
Imprint: Nick Hern Books
Paperback : 9781839040498, 232 pages, December 2021


A guide to one hundred brilliant plays addressing the most urgent and important issue of our time: the climate crisis. 

The plays – drawn from around the world, written by one hundred different writers, and demonstrating a vast span of styles, genres and cast sizes – all speak to an aspect of the climate emergency. Encompassing both famous plays and lesser-known works, the selection includes recent writing that explicitly wrestles with these issues, as well as classic texts in which these resonances now ring out clearly.

Each play is explored in a concise essay illuminating key themes, and highlighting its contribution to our understanding of climate issues, with sections including Resources, Energy, Migration, Responsibility, Fightback and Hope.

100 Plays to Save the World is a book to provoke as well as inspire – to start conversations, to inform debate, to challenge our thinking, and to be a launch pad for future productions. It is also an empowering resource for theatre directors, producers, teachers, youth leaders and writers looking for plays that speak to our present moment.

Above all, it is a call to arms, to step up, think big, and unleash theatre's power to imagine a better future into being.

The book includes a foreword by Daze Aghaji, a leading youth climate justice activist.


"An unexpected pleasure... The writing is always cogent but urgent... The list of playwrights is both dazzling and diverse... In addition to finding introductions to unknown plays and reminders of some classics, readers will also learn a great deal about the climate crisis, often viewed from unexpected perspectives... a chilling read that is nevertheless both worthy and worthwhile. It is one of those books that should be put on the desks of government ministers around the world."

- British Theatre Guide

"A fascinating, brutally honest collection of essays demonstrating the power theatre has to predict, dissect and shout about the climate emergency… this book could easily be dry, but it is anything but. It is an engaging and stimulating delve into the breadth of incredible playwriting out there that can contribute to the fight of activists around the world."

- Everything Theatre

"An invaluable guide that deals with the environmental crisis head-on."

- Broadway World