Caryl Churchill

A Number, Menier Chocolate Factory, London

Caryl Churchill's play could not, at first glance, be more topical – on the day of its opening, the doctor who developed IVF won a Nobel Prize. But, on second hearing, the 50-minute two-hander seems less impressive than when Michael Gambon and Daniel Craig performed it on its premiere in 2002 or when Timothy and Sam West, the current cast, did so in Sheffield in 2006.

The playwright: Lucy Kirkwood

Meet Lucy Kirkwood, a young playwright with a singular – and just a little bit dark – dramatic vision. Her first play, Tinderbox, was described as "Joe Orton's Entertaining Mr Sloane as rewritten by the League of Gentleman" while her bold, rip-roaring take on Hedda Gabler, at the Gate Theatre, transposed Ibsen's classic drama to 21st-century Notting Hill where, instead of flinging Lovborg's manuscript on the fire, in a thrilling coup de théâtre, Hedda gulped down the memory chip containing his life's work.