Play info

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GEST is thrilled to present the hilarious and deeply moving International hit
EVERY BRILLIANT THING by Duncan MacMillian with Jonny Donahoe.
Performed by Gary Whitaker.

Directed by Kristina Brändén Whitaker
9 November- 13 December 2017 at Gothenburg English Studio Theatre.

Plus and extra added performance 29 December 2017
"You're seven years old. Mum's in hospital. Dad says she's 'done something stupid'.
She finds it hard to be happy. You start to make a list of everything that's brilliant about the world:
1. Ice cream
2. Water fight
3. People falling over
4. Rollercoasters
5. Laughing so hard you shoot milk through your nose."

As the boy grows into a man the list evolves too. Over 30 years and thousands of entries later, he discovers that the list might even help save himself.
A touching, funny and life-affirming play about depression and the lengths we will go to for those we love.

"Every brilliant thing is unusual as it is a feelgood play about depression, transferred to Gothenburg's English speaking stage with great sensitivity for the material, by the theatre's Artistic Director Kristina Brändén Whitaker."- Göteborgs-Posten

"Gary Whitaker, in return, has made Jonny Donahoe's role his own, with comic musicality that tickles, overwhelms, and (without losing its poignancy) quickly switches to humble minor notes. "...the narrator role also needs to be carried by someone with ice cold nerves and a skill akin to "improvisational jazz". Fortunately for Gothenburg English Studio Theater at Chapmans Torg - GEST – joint co-founder/Artistic Director and actor Gary Whitaker, has enough rhythm in his body for a whole ragtime orchestra. " - Göteborgs -Posten

HELP and ADVICE: If you or anyone you know have been affected by any of the issues in Every Brilliant Thing, Please click here for help and advice.


Tickets are now on sale through Kulturpunkten:Book online and buy directly HERE, via telephone 031-368 32 99 or visit the box office at Stora Teatern (Mon-Fri at 12-18 & Sat at 10-14).
For matinees, school bookings, group bookings, special bookings and other booking enquiries please contact GEST directly on 031- 42 50 65, info[at]gest.se
Price: 200 SEK (150 SEK for students and unemployed, 170 SEK for pensioners).
Duration of the performance: 70 minutes (no interval).

After Show Discussions: GEST is hosting two After Show Discussions on the subject of suicide preventionimmediately after the performances of Every Brilliant Thing 17 November and 1 December. On 17 November, Jan Beskow, Professor and Suicide Researcher will be joining Gary Whitaker, the actor in Every Brilliant Thing and the audience in a discussion after the performance. On 1 Decemeber, we are joined by Martin Letell, Education Coordinator for Suicidprevention Väst and Risk Sociology Researcher. Find more information on our Facebook page.

9 November at 19.00 (Premiere)
10 November at 19.00
14 November at 19.00
15 November at 19.00
16 November at 19.00
17 November at 19.00 (After Show Discussion at 20.15)
21 November at 19.00
22 November at 19.00
23 November at 19.00
24 November at 19.00
28 November at 19.00
29 November at 19.00
30 November at 19.00
1 December at 19.00 (After Show Discussion at 20.15)
2 December at 19.00
5 December at 19.00
6 December at 19.00
7 December at 19.00
8 December at 19.00
9 December at 19.00
12 December at 19.00
13 December at 19.00

29 December at 19.00
MATINEE PERFORMANCES (please book through GEST):
8 November at 13.00
13 November at 13.00
14 November at 13.00
20 November at 13.00
21 November at 13.00
27 November at 13.00
28 November at 13.00
4 December at 13.00
7 December at 13.00
11 December at 13.00
12 December at 13.00


Gothenburg English Studio Theatre, Chapmans Torg 10

Tram stop: Chapmans Torg.


We want to make your visit to GEST as enjoyable as possible and we aim to cater for everyone's needs.

Access for people with mobility restrictions

Our foyer and the theatre are completely accessible if you use wheelchair or mobility scooter. The entrance is on ground level on Chapmans Torg and cars can stop next to the entrance.

One of our two WCs is accessible.

Please note! If you use a wheelchair or mobility scooter and you wish to see a performance at GEST, please contact us in advance and inform us about your visit, so that we can arrange the seating in our theatre accordingly. If you book your ticket via Kulturpunkten, please contact us to let us know which performance you will be attending. We are able to welcome two audience members using wheelchair or mobility scooter for each performance, this is due to safety reasons.

If you use a wheelchair or scooter but wish to sit in a seat during the performance, please contact us so we can arrange for an easy access seat as well as finding a place for your aid during the performance.

Hearing aide

We cannot unfortunately offer any hearing aids, however we can reserve seats close to the stage if necessary.

Guide Dogs

Guide dogs are welcome inside the building. If you wish to attend a performance, a member of staff can care for your dog. Alternatively, depending upon the production, it may be possible for you to take your dog into the performance – please contact us for more information.


For a production programme in large print, please contact us prior to your visit.


Duncan Macmillian - Playwright

Duncan Macmillan is an award-winning playwright whose work includes the acclaimed adaptation of George Orwell's 1984 (Headlong /Nottingham Theatre / UK tour and Almeida Theatre), People Places and Things (National Theatre/Wyndham's Theatre), Reise Durch die Nacht, adapt. Friederike Mayröcker (created with Katie Mitchell and Lyndsey Turner, Schauspielhaus Köln); Don Juan Comes Back From The WAar adapt. Ödön von Horváth (Finborough Theatre); Monster (Royal Exchange/Manchester International Festival). Duncan has written extensively for theatre in addition to working in radio, television and film.

He was the recipient of two awards in the inaugural Bruntwood Playwriting Competition, 2006. Other Awards include the UK Theatre Best Director (with Robert Icke), 2014; Best New Play at the Off West End Awards 2013 and the Nestroypreis for Best German Language Production, 2013. He has twice been nominated for an Olivier Award in the Best New Play category. His work with director Katie Mitchell has been selected for Theatertreffen and the Avignon Festival, and continues to run in rep and tour the world.

Kristina Brändén Whitaker - Director

Kristina Branden WhitakerKristina is GEST's Executive Artistic Director, director and an actress with extensive experience in theatre, television and film both in Sweden and internationally. Most recently she directed the GESTs production of Broken Biscuits 2017, Offline in 2016 and YEN in 2015.Her playwright debut Expectations, in which she also played Klara, won the Fringe Award for Outstanding Theatre at Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2010.
Kristina is from Gothenburg but spend 13 years in London where she trained as an actress at the prestigious Central School of Speech and Drama. She has worked as an actress in various theatres in both the UK and Sweden. Her Television and film credits includes; the Swedish-Danish TV series Bron (The Bridge) for SVT, the international IFTA winning feature film As If I am Not There (Stella Nova Films/Wideey Films), Steven Spielberg's Band of Brothers, Peter Birro's SVT drama's Viva Hate and How Soon is Now (Upp till Kamp) and SVT's award winning Sanningen om Marika. In GEST's previous productions she has acted in The Events, Belongings, My Romantic History, Cock, Expectations, Contractions, After The End and After Miss Julie.

Gary Whitaker - Performer/Narrator

Gary litenjpgGary is an actor, director and the Co-Artistic Director of GEST. Most recently he directed "Jag var här först" by Kristian Hallberg for Folkteatern. He has directed many of GEST's productions including Expectations, the winner of The Fringe Review Award for Outstanding Theatre. His international directing experience includes; The Young Vic London, The Contact Theatre Manchester, The Pleasance Theatre Edinburgh. As an actor he has worked all over the world with highly respected writers and directors including Lars Von Trier, Alan Ayckbourn, Max Stafford- Clarke and Anand Tucker. His theatre credits include; leading roles in London's West End, Royal Shakespeare Company, Royal Court, Royal Exchange, West Yorkshire Playhouse and Out of Joint. His TV and film credits include; the multi award-winning The Arbor, Melancholia, The Red Riding Trilogy, The Gathering, Wire in the Blood, Vincent, Waterloo Road, Sunday, In Deep, Heartbeat, The Vice, Holby City, three series of The First of the Summer Wine for BBC and Isprinsessan and 183 Dagar for SVT.
For GEST Gary has directed:Belongings, The Woman in Black, Fly Me to the Moon, My Romantic History, This Wide Night, Expectations, Contractions and The Collecter. He has acted in GESTs productions; The Woman in Black, Cock, Stones in His Pockets and After Miss Julie.

Ger Olde Monnikhof - Set and Costume Designer

gersvartvitGer is a member of GEST and is GESTs theatre and set designer.He has worked on many of GESTs productions including; The Events, Yen, Expectations, My Romantic History, This Wide Night, Contractions, Stones in His Pockets and After The End. Ger has worked as a freelance set designer since the late eighties and has his base at Theater Trixter, Gothenburg/Sweden.

He trained at the Royal Art Academy in The Hague, Netherlands in interior design, but has also been working with architecture as well as snow and ice sculpting.

As a set designer he has been working in various fields like theatre, opera and musicals.

Fredrik Glahns - Lightning Designer

fredrik glanhsFredrik is a freelance lighting designer, set designer and playwright. During the past fifteen years he has designed productions both in Sweden and internationally. His credits include theatre, dance, opera and musicals. His most recent credits include: "Don G" at Malmö Opera, "Prosperos Garden" at Gothenburg opera, "My Fair Lady" at Säffle opera, "En sak i taget" att Stockholms Stadsteater/Kulturhuset Vällingby, "Bunden" at Teater Tofta, "Fröken Julie" at Riksteatern, "Leka med Elden" at Kalmar Teater and "Into the woods" at Stora Teatern. Fredrik has been the lighting designer for nine of GEST's previous productions: Stones In His Pockets, Contractions, Cock (together with Beate Persdotter Løken), My Romantic History, This Wide Night, Fly Me To The Moon, Foxfinder and Belongings and Yen.
Upcoming productions include lighting and set design for "Jag blir nog aldrig bjuden dit igen" at Malmö Opera, lightning at and set design for "En kvinnas hjärta" at Piteå Kammaropera.

Karl Wassholm - Sound Designer

Karl is a freelance sound designer, audio engineer, composer, and musician. Over the past 8 years he has worked with several companies in Gothenburg and around Sweden, as a sound designer, composer, musician, actor, and audio engineer. Credits include Teater Tamauer, Teater Blaffa, Västanå teater, RISK-teatern, Säffle Opera, Masthuggsteatern, Teater Tofta, among others, as well as several productions as sound designer and composer for GEST. He also works regularly at the musical theater programs at Gothenburg University and BalettAkademien i Göteborg.


Trailer by: Lina Ikse

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For teachers


If you wish to see a performance of Every Brilliant Thing and your students are 19 or under and the school is within the Gothenburg municipality, the fee will be 30kr per ticket. This is made possible by the city of Gothenburg's 'biljettsubvention', which reimburses theatres. For students from outside of Gotheburg, tickets cost 110 kr. please book through GEST.

After Show Discussion and Teacher Resource Pack
We offer an After Show Discussion, which would last approximately 20-30 minutes. This is an invaluable opportunity for your group to discuss the play with the actors. After Show Discussions can be booked on 031 42 50 65 or info[at]gest.se.