Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig
Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig

2020 Finalist

The King of Hell’s Place

Synopsis: Henan Province, 1922. China is laying the foundations for global wealth and power – business is booming. Yin-Yin, a young Ministry of Health official, finds herself recruited into a new and unusual trade that boasts infinite stock and infinite demand. But amidst the hype and the soaring profits, she rapidly uncovers an unimaginable secret that will test to the limit her loyalties to her profession, to her family and to her country.

Cast Breakdown: 5M, 3W

Set/Costume Requirements: Rural/Urban China, 1992-1998


U.S. Theatre Agent: Rachel Viola
U.K. Theatre Agent: Harriet Pennington Legh
Film/T.V. Manager: Corinne Hayoun

Play Service: Methuen Drama/Bloomsbury Press

Bio: Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig is an internationally produced playwright who has spent the past decade completing a trilogy of theatrical works [The World of Extreme Happiness, Snow in Midsummer, The King of Hell’s Palace] that are set in contemporary China and explore global capitalism and intergenerational trauma. Her plays have been staged in the United Kingdom at the Royal Shakespeare Company, the National Theatre, Hampstead Theatre, Trafalgar Studios 2 [West End] and the Unicorn Theatre. In the United States her work has been staged at venues that include the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Manhattan Theater Club and the Goodman Theatre. Her first full length musical, The New Planet, a collaboration with composer Michael Roth and director-choreographer Maija García, will receive a workshop production at the Guthrie Theatre this summer as part of the theatre maker training program A Guthrie Experience.