June 1944. One man’s decision is about to change the course of history.
Everything is in place for the biggest invasion ever known in Europe – D-Day. One last crucial question remains: will the weather be right on the day?
Problematically there are two opposing forecasts. American celebrity weatherman Colonel Krick predicts sunshine, while Scot Dr James Stagg, Chief Meteorological Officer for the Allied Forces, forecasts a storm. As the world watches and waits, General Eisenhower, Allied Supreme Commander, must decide which of these bitter antagonists to trust. The decision will not only seal the fates of thousands of men, but could win or lose the entire war.
An extraordinary and little-known true story, David Haig's play thrillingly explores the responsibilities of leadership, the challenges of prophecy and the personal toll of taking a stand.
Pressure premiered at the Royal Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh, in May 2014 before transferring to Chichester Festival Theatre, in a production directed by John Dove, with the author playing James Stagg.
"The tension is palpable and expertly maintained throughout, with real wit and warmth as well... Haig has obviously done his research, and then smartly played with the facts for full dramatic effect. You wouldn’t think a story about predicting the weather could play like a thriller, but it does… a rip-roaring evening’s entertainment." —Radio Times
"Completely gripping... a play about unsung heroes, responsibility, integrity and the nature of bravery." —Financial Times
"Fascinatingly original… with its moments of comedy and atmosphere of high stakes, this is an excellent documentary drama." —The Arts Desk
"Haig has researched his subject matter in great detail, but more importantly the play grabs the attention from the outset and never loosens its dramatic grip. It captures the extraordinary pressure its characters are under at this crucial turning point in the Second World War, with wit, compassion and sheer dramatic verve. By turns funny, tense and deeply affecting. I cannot recommend it too highly." —Telegraph
"This highly watchable, microscopic look into the mechanics of battle is nothing short of enthralling. It's also surprisingly humorous; Haig's dialogue feels quintessentially British and for that reason it resonates fondly." —Broadway World
"Sharp, witty and affecting… events flow across the stage like sunlight and shadow on a changeable summer's afternoon – fast and hectic, tense and fraught, calm, thoughtful." —Guardian
"Tempestuous and highly charged... a thunderous piece of theatre." —The Stage
"A tense, tight and quite brilliant drama… more moving than a dozen Saving Private Ryans." —British Theatre Guide
"Utterly engrossing… unostentatiously and with a quiet intensity, Pressure covers a lot of ground without ever resorting to patriotic cliché." —Whatsonstage.com