Thomas Sainsbury grew up in Matamata, a small rural town in the Waikato. He completed a BA at Auckland University, majoring in English Literature and Theatre, and became involved as a writer, director and performer for university productions and the underground theatre scene.
After graduating, Sainsbury formed Fingerprints and Teeth Productions, a theatre company for which he wrote and produced several plays becoming a ‘powerhouse of creativity’, writing, performing and directing countless plays, as well as writing for television.
Sainsbury has won Playmarket’s Young Playwright of the Year four times and has been a finalist for the Bruce Mason Award and the Playmarket New Play Award. His play The Canary also won Playmarket’s 2010 Special Prize for an Auckland Playwright. Several plays, including The Christmas Monologues, . . . and then you die and A Simple Procedure have had seasons in London and Australia. He is the co-writer of the television series Super City for which he has won a SWANZ for Best Comedy Script.
It's a simple enough procedure.
And then you die, a black comedy, is the tale of Debbie, Josie and Max.
Cast: 3 - 27
Three months alone in a basement.
Food is running out. Water's running dry.
His strength is fading.
And he's sure he's not alone.
A road trip turns into a nightmare when three siblings break down in Kaitangata. The locals are strange. The food is stranger.
Up to 16 characters
Cast: 6 - 16
A most improbable love triangle, one that appears to have only two sides. Roberto, a full-time barman and part-time musician, meets a lot of women in his line of work. When a tipsy, affection-hungry young woman called Cat slips him her phone number at closing time, he thinks little of it. Even so, there's no resisting the lure of a late night booty call. A week later, another young woman, Cleo, enters the bar. She's smart, very cynical, utterly indifferent to Roberto - and a dead ringer for Cat: same face, figure, hair and eye-colour, even an identical kiss. Are they twins? Both deny it. Is it a case of one woman with multiple personalities? A fiendish fidelity test or a cruel prank, perhaps?
Cast: 2 - 18
People are disappearing. Coca-City is being bombed. Rebels are within.
Caustic is a dystopian tale of a world drenched in corporate branding. Loni, a patriotic citizen of Coca-City Herne Bay, has her world turned upside down when her husband brings a rebel into their home. From brushes with the law to journeying through the badlands, Loni must learn to rely on her wits to survive.
Cast: 6 - 24
After yet another day of the thankless grind, Cindy, Eric, and their loutish 'friend' Hans, are killed in a car accident. Cindy and Eric are sentenced to an eternity in hell because they didn't believe in God. Hans is accepted into Heaven because he asked for God's forgiveness a split second before impact.
Cast: 7 - 18
When Willy gets caught shoplifting his life is plunged into one of lies, deception and hiding from the pigs. During community service he meets Louis. Another doofus? Or a criminal mastermind? Either way, Willy and Louis are in for a bumpy ride.
Cast: 3 - 12
An extremely fun and feisty play. Plenty to laugh at and about, AND think about - non-stop action and lots of quick and clever lines. A very welcome reprieve from the demands of everyday life - escapism and entertainment paired with some sizzling, saucy dance action!
Cast: 5 - 19
When struggling poet Stian is invited to a dinner party by a rich philanthropist, Winnie Mellor, he expects only opportunities. It soon becomes clear that Winnie's intentions are far from innocent as she begins using her power, influence and generous offerings to support Stian's artistic endeavours and, more importantly, ensure she gets what she wants from him. Along with the other guests - Garth the experimental film maker, Martin the stylish fashion designer and Kim the Philipino house maid - what we see is a cautionary tale about the dangers of lust and greed.
A comedy about 6 individuals who work in a gas station.
Victor is a scientist. Victor wants to save the world. Victor engineers a new species. Victor creates a monster.
Cast: 4 - 18
Six short plays set in and around a hotel. Six tales about the lonely, the desperate and the feeble. Graeme, the cleaner, thinks he's being ousted by an influx of new, cheaper immigrants. Obsessive Arina's dream has come true when she wins a date with her pop star idol. Conservative Nancy has hired a prostitute as an anniversary gift for her husband.
Cast: 3 - 12
Mihi was once a thriving dairy factory town. Yet since the factory's closure unemployment has soared, and the embittered populace has become directionless. Enter Joseph Nordhoy, an enthusiastic Christian Youth Group leader. Joseph is determined to put the pep and religious fervour back into the local teenagers.
Cast: 2 - 12
Nicole's getting married. Elvira's organised the party. Giselle's come for the booze. Lara's up for some party pashing. Rochelle needs some attention. Caroline isn't sure what's going on. And Megan is out for revenge. Little Blonde Hen, a biting comedy, follows a group of girlfriends as their evening disintegrates into drunken debauchery. Nicole's wedding is right around the corner and although everything appears on track, deep down there's some brooding.
Abigail's Party meets The Women, Little Blonde Hen is a play about joy, despair and penis straws.
LOSER, a black comedy, is the story of Glenwood High's ten year reunion. Following six ex-students through the build-up, eventual proceedings, and aftermath of the reunion, Loser is a tale of failed dreams, painful memories and a giant school-shaped cake.
Up to 39 characters.
Cast: 6 - 39
When Olivia returns from a work trip to China she believes she has discovered a gross crime against human rights. When she plans to return, however, a strange sickness takes hold. First a stomach ache. Then dizzy spells. And then one morning her fiancee, Tim, wakes up to find Olivia transformed into a snarling monster. The timid Tim must now do everything in his power to save the love of his life. On discovering the disease is highly infectious Tim must rely on his wits and savagery to succeed.
Up to 13 characters
Cast: 4 - 13
LUV, a black comedy, follows four twenty-somethings and their desperate pursuits of love. Gemma Miller-Jones (cup-size double D) has been frequenting the local sports bar in the hopes of snagging a league-playing husband. When she spies the man of her dreams, Tobais Winstanley, she decides to pursue him no matter how degrading she has to behave.
Cast: 4 - 17
A farce based around the confused relationships in a mental facility.
Cast: 6 - 11
Cain is on the run. Junior is wants escape. In the hostile world of Huntly they band together and begin their slippery slide into crime.
Up to 20 characters
Cast: 4 - 20
A group of desperate dreamers in dead-end jobs interact, fight, plot, get trapped, make plans and get themselves into incredibly tight and dangerous corners until everything boils into a crisis - and then come out the other end.
Cast: 4 - 18
Amy moved to New York to pursue her musical dreams, but things have soured after only four weeks. Life seems to be a painful struggle against the constant stream of bills, unsmiling faces and repeated rejection. And then, to top it all off, someone terrorises her in her home. They wore a white mask, they wanted her blood, and they will come again.
Will she be ready for them . . .
The Giles family is inviting you for dinner. The beast is fattened and ready for the slaughter. Father's on carving duty. Mother is on vegetables. Adversary daughters Courtney and Diane have dessert covered. Son-in-law Francois is in charge of looking good. The prodigal son, Anthony, just wants to be left alone. And Granddaughter Tamsin wants her desires satisfied. Now.
Cast: 2 - 10
Byron stutters. Leah brags. Sam reads minds.
Chloe gossips. Ginnie yearns. Dylan commits crimes.
Goff stumbles. Ava bluffs. Pepper spouts (crap) rhymes.
TALK is a blackly comic nine-hander, a satire of modern living and our favourite pastime; talking.
It's Christmas morning and as the gifts are handed out you hear the stories of the many dysfunctions of the season. A series of twisted tales.
Can be presented by 1 woman (doing all female parts) and 1 man.
Published by THE PLAY PRESS in a volume with "Sit on It" by Georgina Titheridge.
Cast: 2 - 7
Seven twisted tales of the silly season.
What do the weirdoes and the outcasts do for Christmas?
The Christmas Monologues 2 follows a fresh bunch of misfits - A mannish sufferer of intense road rage, an over-eater dreading the Christmas banquet, a naughty little school girl wanting to trap some reindeers, a mall Santa yearning for his childhood love, a family learning that puppies aren't just for Christmas, the mother of the second coming of Christ and a security guard who has to listen to the same goddamn Christmas CD on repeat.
When Clive is employed as biographer for ruthless capitalist, Bill Wilder, he enters a world of decadence, deceit and disappointment. As he researches Bill’s life and gets to know his children and housekeeper, he soon realizes things are not as they first appear . . .
Or is it Clive that’s not as he first appears . . .
Adam's peaceful existence is turned upside down when he is diagnosed with testicular cancer. But all is not lost. A new medical procedure promises to be the solution to his problems. Fifteen years later. Complications with the procedure. Adam wakes up from a coma, hidden in his fiancee's basement. But the world has changed. All the men have disappeared, and the world is run by women.
Cast: 6 - 9
The Mall, a black comedy, follows the inhabitants of the mall as they go about their days in their pristine, sterile environment.
Cast: 6 - 18
The Needies charts the downfall of three flatmates and their insatiable appetites for everything consumerist. The Needies toys with ideas of consumerism - how twenty-somethings have become accustomed to living their lives outside their means leading to amounting debts, which they tend to ignore. The play makes use of Thomas Sainsbury's fantastically dark and comedic sense of humour, using strong imaginative content to tease the audience.
Up to 18 characters
Cast: 3 - 18
Everything you hate and cringe about in theatre thrown into a hilarious pisstake of the artform everyone holds in such esteem.
Think unnecessary plot twists. Think bad singing. Think the worst acting imagineable. Think the shittest theatre you will ever see…