About Us

The Theatre Company

The seeds for Tobacco Tea Theatre Company were planted when Christopher Cutting and Lucy Ahmed met through their student union’s drama society, FECCLES, in 2010. Over the course of three years at university, Christopher and Lucy worked together on many shows and the running of the society itself (with Christopher as President and Lucy as PR Officer). The two of them quickly settled into a working partnership; Lucy would produce a show while Christopher would direct it. By the time Christopher graduated from Exeter they had both discovered passions for these roles and knew that they wanted to pursue them professionally. After one last FECCLES trip up to the Edinburgh Fringe in 2013, they decided that the best way forward was to start up a theatre company of their very own, and Tobacco Tea was born.

Christopher pitched the artistic idea behind the company to Lucy, and the two of them set about making plans for the future. By the end of 2013 they had both moved to Bristol and began work on the company’s first show, ‘Bunbury Is Dead’, which premiered in February 2014. Tobacco Tea has already won audience acclaim for its witty, intelligent original satires and is currently working on ‘Vitomori’, which premieres on the 24th of March 2015, and a tour for their hit show ‘The Accidental Adventures of Sherlock Holmes’, including a run at the 2015 Edinburgh Fringe.

Our Team

Artistic Director: Christopher Cutting

I am a theatre director and writer, and Artistic Director of Tobacco Tea. Originally from East Sussex, now living in Bristol, I started the company with Lucy after completing my English degree at the University of Exeter. My ultimate ambition for my career is very simple; to create art that changes lives. No matter how small an impact or how subtle a change it may be, I seek to touch people’s lives with my work as I entertain them. It’s by engaging with people that your work becomes part of a shift in individual perspectives, which goes on to become real change in the world. That, to me, is what reaching an audience is all about. As both a director and writer the process of creation and realisation is the thing that makes me feel alive; the expression of ideas and emotion and the realisation of a script into performance are what I really live for.

Tobacco Tea has the aim of being incredibly entertaining, specialising in the underperformed and hilarious social satire genre, and is also a particular response to the modern world. Social and technological change have created, and are still creating, a new kind of society we have not fully come to understand, and the advent of social media has, for many, brought back the kind of social politics in everyday life that used to be confined to closed groups, like high society or an aristocratic court, only on a mass scale this time. There is, in short, a new kind of repression and manners defining our lives, particularly those of my generation, (Generation Y, Millennials) which is causing unhappiness and deserves to be criticised and satirised.

Satire is a vibrant and necessary component of a functioning democratic culture, and we’re committed to producing new satirical works and challenging society. As for the classics, strip away the historical settings of comedies of manners and you find very modern social behaviour. The genre has never been more relevant and, since more people are affected than ever before, has never been more needed; the fact that audiences love it testifies to that. Much modern satire is also incredibly toothless, and fails to really address modern life, so we’re out to make it really hit home. Comedy is a more powerful force for social change than many give it credit for!

Outside theatre, I have keen interests in literature, history, politics, comedy (especially satire), society, art, psychology and Englishness, amongst many other things. There is nothing that it is not worth investigating if you seek to understand the world, life and the human condition, so there is no shortage of things to hold my interest!