Hope & Joy production image showing a woman in green scrubs standing next to woman in hospital gown sitting on the edge of a bed holding a teddy

Image caption: Image by Jassy Earl

Hope and Joy

By: Ellie Stewart

Image of an egg on a black background
Image by Roger Culos

Hope and Joy

By: Ellie Stewart

Directed by: Caitlin Skinner

Co-produced by: Stellar Quines and Pearlfisher

In association with: Cumbernauld Theatre

With support from: Creative Scotland National Lottery

Hope’s labour is unusual and uneggspected. Happily, nothing fazes Joy, the hospital cleaner, who helps Hope escape.

When Joy is sacked from her job, she moves in with Hope and her swan-boy son, Magnus. Their lives collide in chaos, Hope is learning to love, Magnus is learning to fly, and Joy is in an unhelpful relationship with a goldfish. Can they survive this shifting world?

A deeply original play that explores love and loss in a changing environment, using bold visuals and strong physical elements to imagine a Scotland in a time much like ours, but not quite.

"a free-spirited construction, laced throughout with everyday absurdism and a magical realism"

by The Herald

"a true, rich women’s comedy for our time, adored by everyone in the audience"

by The Scotsman


  • Kim Gerard


  • Beth Marshall


  • Ryan Havelin


Creative Team

  • Ellie Stewart


  • Caitlin Skinner


  • Susan Bear

    Sound Design

  • Emma Jones

    Lighting Design

  • Becky Minto

    Set Design and Costume

  • Amy Kennedy

    Movement Director

  • Christine Devaney

    Movement Direction Mentor

  • Ellie Van Reil

    Wardrobe Supervisor

  • Tariq Hussain

    Production Manager

  • Sophie Wright

    Stage Manager

  • Lynn Wiseman

    Technical Manager

  • Rachel Pryde

    Technical Intern

  • Helen McIntosh

    Project Producer

  • Catherine King, Rachel Amey

    BSL Interpreters

About The Show

Stellar Quines co-produced Hope and Joy with Pearlfisher. Pearlfisher is a new style of theatre company – for Scotland and beyond – which allies the development and production of new work to a radical approach to growing talent. It was founded by Philip Howard, Mike Griffiths and Caitlin Skinner. This was their first production.

Ellie Stewart won the Tron Theatre’s Progressive Playwright Award for Hope and Joy in 2016. Her play The Return toured in 2018 to great critical acclaim.

Caitlin Skinner is Stellar Quines Artistic Director and Chief Executive Officer. She is a Director with and co-founder of Pearlfisher and Director with Jordan & Skinner. She has directed numerous award-winning productions including Sanitise and Woke. Stellar Quines supported Caitlin and the Scottish Drama Training Network with their Network Fringe production Propeller, which launched our Letters To… programme. In 2017 we presented a special celebration for International Day of the Girl with Village Pub Theatre, supporting Caitlin in her then role as Artistic Director.

Hope and Joy was produced by an all female creative team that included Susan Bear (Sound Design), Emma Jones (Lighting Design) whose Stellar Quines productions include The Lover and Fibres, and Becky Minto (Set Design & Costume) whose Stellar Quines productions include The 306: Day and Bingo!

Images: Jassy Earl

Tour History


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