By Dario Fo
In a new adaption by Marieke Hardy
Directed by Sarah Giles 

A whip-smart new adaptation of a raucous 70s farce by Dario Fo from ABC TV’s comedy powerhouse Marieke Hardy, opens at the Drama Theatre, Sydney Opera House this February starring the incomparable Helen Thomson (STC’s Mary Stuart). 

Prices are out of control – and so is Antonia. Sick of having barely enough to pay the gas bill, she leads an uprising at a local supermarket that sees a group of angry housewives shoplift ‘til they drop. Now, with a pile of newly “liberated” loot, Antonia and her best friend Margherita embark on a ludicrous, laugh-a-minute escapade, keeping their well-meaning but bumbling husbands in the dark and staying three steps ahead of the coppers. 

No Pay? No Way! (sometimes known as Can’t Pay? Won’t Pay!) is the work of Dario Fo, Nobel Laureate and the master of theatrical farce. True to form, the show mixes political satire, hilarious plot twists and sharp-as-a-tack dialogue to create a thrilling experience. Marieke Hardy said “You can feel the energy in his writing – the shouting, the pace, the movement. Putting your heart into politics and social justice can be emotionally crushing for anybody – it’s so important that satire and humour can grow through the ashes.”

Director Sarah Giles, who also directed STC’s smash hit production of Dario Fo’s Accidental Death of an Anarchist in 2018, said “Fo is a rare theatre-maker who seamlessly combines brilliant farce with fierce politics. Marieke’s adaptation highlights the women’s courageous efforts that in turn guide the male character’s realisation. It is the women who open the men’s eyes to the corrupt and flawed structures that are working against them, whilst sparking hope for the future with solidarity.” 

Helen Thomson is joined by a stellar cast of Catherine Văn-Davies (STC’s White Pearl, SBS Hungry Ghosts), Glenn Hazeldine (STC’s Così), Rahel Romahn (STC’s Lord of the Flies) and Aaron Tsindos (STC’s Muriel’s Wedding the Musical). Exhilarating, insightful and chaotically funny, No Pay? No Way! is not to be missed.


Venue: Drama Theatre, Sydney Opera House
Dates: 10 February – 20 March 2020
Box Office: (02) 9250 1777

No Pay? No Way! will also play Riverside Theatres, Parramatta from 1 April – 4 April 2020. Tickets can be purchased at