LEWIS SCHAFFER:

UNOPENED LETTERS FROM MY MOTHER

London-based Lewis Schaffer had 23 unopened and unread letters from his mother, sent before she died alone in New York. Why didn’t he read them? And what happened when he opened them before audiences at the Edinburgh Festival? Lewis Schaffer finds meaning in a real-life family tragedy – making audiences cry one moment and laugh the next.

​’​The show is extraordinary. It picks its audience up and carries them into a vortex of awfully funny and plain awful.’  The Scotsman 
 
‘An affecting performance art experience.’ Chortle
 
‘Lewis Schaffer undeniably has funny bones.’ Time Out
 
Winner: ‘Fringe Experience Award’​

‘The most memorable and extraordinary experience at the Fringe’

EDINBURGH 2017 REVIEWS

The Wee Review awarded me the ​​Fringe Experience Award​ ​ – given ‘to the show that provides the most memorable and extraordinary experience at the Fringe, be it good, bad or plain strange’.

‘Exposing and uncomfortable hour of Schaffer reading aloud letters from his dead mother for the first time.’ [Matthew Keeley]​

Robert Peacock, The Wee Review [Not starred]

‘This is extra level mining of personal grief; it throws shade on your “Dead Dad” comics. Here we have the raw material, entirely unadorned or sculpted for effect. It’s the only Fringe show that might have been worth seeing every night of its run, and one of the very few offering real jeopardy. It may yet yield something unbearably painful. Joyous? Unlikely.’  http://theweereview.com/review/lewis-schaffer-unopened-letters-mother/

​Kate Copstick, The Scotsman ★★★★

‘But it is hard for me not to let my rising rage at him as a person get in the way of a fair review. The show is extraordinary. It picks its audience up and carries them into a vortex of awfully funny and plain awful.’  http://www.scotsman.com/lifestyle/culture/edinburgh-festivals/comedy-review-lewis-schaffer-unopened-letters-from-my-mother-1-4533548

​Steve Bennett,  Chortle ★★★

‘For some, the fact that this is quite unlike anything else in the programme will be enough to make it a must-see. Unopened Letters From My Mother isn’t so much comedy as an affecting performance art experience, in which comic Lewis Schaffer prods away at the scab over a deep emotional wound, just to see what might happen.’  http://www.chortle.co.uk/review/2017/08/11/37437/lewis_schaffer%3A_unopened_letters_from_my_mother

Brian Donaldson, The List ★★★ 

‘The point of all this remains rather unclear, but you have to admire the gall of the man. Unopened Letters From My Mother could be brave, brilliant or baffling. Chances are it’s all three.​’ https://edinburghfestival.list.co.uk/article/94552-lewis-schaffer-unopened-letters-from-my-mother/

FREE UNTIL FAMOUS TOUR 2015 -2016

Lewis Schaffer toured the UK with his unique free show – over 50 dates in art centres and theatres. Here are a some of the venues. 

GLOUCESTER Guildhall 01452503050
www.gloucesterguildhall.co.uk January 16, 2015

WINDSOR Firestation Arts Centre 01753 866 865
www.firestationartscentre.com January 30, 2015

WOOLHAMPTON The Angel 01189 713 307 (£10)
www.theangel-woolhampton.co.uk January 31, 2015

LYTHAM ST ANNES Lowther Pavilion 01253 794221
www.lowtherpavilion.co.uk February 6, 2015

BURNLEY Mechanic’s Theatre 01282 664400
www.burnleymechanics.co.uk February 7, 2015

HARPENDEN Public Halls 01582 762880
www.harpendenpublichalls.co.uk February 13, 2015

LEICESTER Dave’s Comedy Festival (£5 – one hour show)
www.comedy-festival.co.uk February 20, 21, 2015

CAMBRIDGE Junction 01223 511511
www.junction.co.uk February 27, 2015

GREAT TORRINGTON Plough Arts Centre 01805 624624
www.theploughartscentre.org.uk February 28, 2015

CARMARTHEN Theatrau Sir Gar 0845 226 3510
www.carmarthenshiretheatres.co.uk Saturday March 7, 2015

WORKINGTON Carnegie Theatre 01900 602122
www.carnegietheatre.co.uk Friday March 13, 2015

KIDDERMINSTER Town Hall 01562 732158
www.wyreforestdc.gov.uk Saturday March 14, 2015

PLUMSTEAD COMMON – The Pavilion 07860 609796
www.comedyonthecommon.com Friday March 20, 2015

BEDFORD The Place 01234 354321
www.theplacebedford.org.uk April 2, 2015

WASHINGTON Arts Centre 0191 219 3455
www.artscentrewashington.co.uk April 10, 2015

BISHOP STORTFORD Rhodes Art Centre 01279 651746
www.rhodesbishopsstortford.org.uk April 17, 2015

WELLS NEXT THE SEA Granary Theatre 01328 710193
www.granarytheatre.co.uk April 24, 2015

REDDITCH Palace Theatre 01527 61544
www.redditchpalacetheatre.co.uk Friday May 8, 2015

CIRENCESTER Sundial Theatre 01285 654228
www.sundial-theatre.co.uk Saturday May 9, 2015

SANDBACH Town Hall 01270 600835
www.sandbach.gov.uk Friday May 29, 2015

MAIDSTONE Hazlitt Exchange 01622 758611
www.hazlittcentres.co.uk Friday June 5, 2015

MORECAMBE The Platform 01524 582803
www.lancaster.gov.uk/platform Friday June 12, 2015

HERTFORD Theatre 01992 531500
www.hertfordtheatre.com Friday June 19, 2015

GATESHEAD Caedmon Hall, Library 0191 4338420
www.gateshead.gov.uk Saturday June 20, 2015

TAUNTON Brewhouse Arts 01823 283244.
www.tauntontheatre.org.uk Friday June 26, 2015

CRANLEIGH Arts Centre 01483 278000
www.cranleighartscentre.org Saturday June 27, 2015

DERBY Assembly Rooms 01332 255800
www.derbylive.co.uk Tuesday July 7, 2015

EXMOUTH Pavilion 01395 222477
www.exmouthpavilion.co.uk Thursday July 23, 2015

GUILDFORD G-Live 0847701797
www.glive.co.uk Friday July 24, 2015

BARNSLEY Lamproom 01226 200075
www.barnsleylamproom.com Saturday July 25, 2015

YORK Great Yorkshire Fringe – Cancelled due to play!

DARLINGTON The Forum 01325 363136
www.theforumonline.co.uk Thursday July 30, 2015

SOUTH SHIELDS Customs House 0191 454 1234
www.customshouse.co.uk Friday July 31, 2015

EDINBURGH Just the Tonic Grassmarket
www.justthetonic.com  August 7-30, 2015

BLACKPOOL The Grand 01253 290190
www.blackpoolgrand.co.uk Tuesday September 1, 2015

BLACKBURN Empire 01254 685500
www.thwaitesempiretheatre.co.uk Friday Sept 11 2015

SHOREHAM Ropetackle Arts Centre 01273 464440
www.ropetacklecentre.co.uk Friday September 18, 2015

BRAINTREE Arts Theatre 01376 556354
www.braintreeartstheatre.com  October 2, 2015

SALISBURY City Hall 01722 434434
www.cityhallsalisbury.co.uk  October 4, 2015

NEW BRIGHTON Floral Pavilion 0151 666 0000
www.floralpavilion.com Thursday October 8, 2015

LYNTON Town Hall 01598 752225
www.lyntonandlynmouth.org.uk Friday October 23, 2015

HORSHAM The Capitol 01403 750220 £12.00
www.thecapitolhorsham.com Saturday October 24, 2015

HALIFAX Victoria Theatre 01422 351158
www.calderdale.gov.uk Friday October 30, 2015

NORTHALLERTON The Forum 01609 776230
www.forumnorthallerton.org.uk Saturday December 5 2015

LONDON Museum of Comedy – Tommy Cooper Room 0207534 1744
www.museumofcomedy.com  12 Dates – December 8 to December 21, 2015 

 

“Who better to give it to us straight than this New Yoiker?”
The Independent