The Barn Theatre, Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire

The Best Man

By Glyn Maxwell
Originally Directed By Jon Croker
Barn Director Glyn Maxwell
10th December – 13th May 2020 at 8:00pm

Duration: 1hr approx. with no intervals

A richly dark and comic tale that absorbs the listener and makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end.

Glyn Maxwell’s well-crafted monologue is highly effective in its combination of the superficial banter expected of a best man with an unexpected dark wit. Hidden jealousies, bitter resentment and deep disgust erupt as Bailey throws open a door on the sinister side of the groom’s life and character.

Presented by arrangement with Glyn Maxwell and Bloomsbury Publishing

The Best Man tells the story of Bailey, the best man at his oldest friend’s wedding. In his search for anecdotes to embellish his speech, Bailey has stumbled across a secret so shocking that it changes everything.

Glasses are charged as Bailey replies on behalf of the bridesmaids. At first it’s genial, more about him and his relationship with his old school pal, now his boss, and the boyhood escapades of ‘the alpha boys’. But revenge is sweet, and his revelations are ever more engrossing as the past is unwrapped, the future not so much toasted as roasted. The Best Man is a tale of love and cheating – with a sting.

Glyn Maxwell has long been regarded as one of Britain’s major poets. He has been awarded the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize, the Somerset Maugham Prize, and the E.M. Forster Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, as well as being shortlisted three times for both the T.S. Eliot and Forward Prizes. Three of his books were New York Times Notable Books of the Year. His One Thousand Nights and Counting: Selected Poems was published last year. Many of his plays have been staged in London and New York. They include The Lifeblood, which was British Theatre Guide’s ‘Best Play on the Fringe’ at Edinburgh in 2004, Broken Journey and The Only Girl in the World (both Time Out Critics’ Choices). Oberon Books publishes his Plays One (The Lifeblood, The Only Girl in the World and Wolfpit), Plays Two (Broken Journey, Best Man Speech and The Last Valentine), The Forever Waltz, Liberty, After Troy, Merlin and The Woods of Time, and the libretti The Lion’s Face and Seven Angels.

Thank you Glyn
Glyn, a long-standing Barn Member, has kindly waived his fee to perform this production.  It would be great if you were able to reciprocate by purchasing some of his work via the link below”

Some more of Glyn’s work – HERE


Originally Directed By
Jon Croker
Barn Director
Glyn Maxwell



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Production PHOTOS

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A richly dark and comic tale that absorbs the listener and makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end.
Glyn Maxwell’s poetic verse is a work of art in itself and is coupled with Swanson’s precise and passionate delivery…An outstanding piece of theatre that will strike a chord with everyone…
A head strong captivating production.
Poignant, haunting and mesmerising the Best Man is a powerful meditation on chances untaken.
Glyn Maxwell’s Superbly written one-man play coupled with Danny Swanson’s vivid characterisation will have you on the edge of your seat…


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Diversity, Equality & Inclusion Statement

At the Barn we are committed to promoting equality and challenging discrimination in all its forms. We strive to create a safe and inclusive environment for all members of the cast and creative team, regardless of their race, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation or gender identity and will work to prevent any form of discrimination or harassment within our organisation.

Part 1, 18th Jan 8pm

Part 2, 19th Jan 8pm

Parts 1+2 20th Jan 2.30pm

Part 1, 23rd Jan 8pm

Part 2, 24th Jan 8pm

Part 1, 25th Jan 8pm

Part 2, 26th Jan 8pm

Part 1, 27th Jan 2.30pm

Part 2,  27th Jan 8pm