A double bill of two one-act plays will make for an interesting evening at the Abbey Theatre.

The Browning Version, first performed in 1948, follows the last day for teacher Andrew Crocker-Harris who is leaving after 18 years. It becomes apparent that he is disliked by his unfaithful wife, his colleagues and students, being subjected to terrible humiliations.

When a well-meaning student gives him a parting gift, it brings about a series of events which lead the teacher to reflect on his past, and contemplate his future.

Black Comedy, on the other hand, is a hilarious farce written in 1965, which led to the Broadway debut of Michael Crawford. The title refers to a very clever use of a reverse lighting scheme. Brindsley, a sculptor, and his fiancé have invited a German art dealer to their home, which they have filled with ‘borrowed’ antiques to appear impressive.

Unfortunately as blackout occurs and – although the audience can see – they must continue their meeting in complete darkness. Chaos ensues with several mistaken identities and an increasingly manic Brindsley trying to cover his tracks and keep everyone ‘in the dark’.

Abbey Theatre, Westminster Lodge, Holywell Hill, St Albans, AL1 2DL, from Friday, September 16, until Sunday, September 18 and Tuesday, September 20 until Saturday, September 24. Details: 01727 857861