Cover photo by Liz Lauren,
compliments of the Victory Gardens Theater

The End of the Tour

Joel Drake Johnson
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Most of this play takes place in a nursing home where a disgruntled, flamboyant, elderly mother is recovering from a bad fall. With her middle-aged, recently divorced daughter by her side, she awaits the arrival of her long-estranged gay son who is bringing his lover for a brief tour of his hometown and his damaging past.

Production Info

Cast: 7 total (3 female, 4 male)
Full Length Drama (about 100 minutes)
Minimal Set Requirements
Contemporary Costumes
Category: Tag:

Press Quotes

“Joel Drake Johnson’s new play is a sensitively written … portrait of a fragmented family … Johnson balances gallows humor with acute insight and compassion. He creates characters so real you wonder what will happen to them after the final blackout — and hope that the healing effects of time will allow parent and children to reconcile and thus reclaim life’s most fundamental and precious relationship.” —Albert Williams, The Reader

“The title of Joel Drake Johnson’s new play, THE END OF THE TOUR, may suggest the final leg in the career of a middle-aged rock band. That is not at all what it’s about, yet the sense of having outlived one’s usefulness is at the heart of this tragicomedy … And even more than that, there is the feeling of being completely unmoored in the midst of one’s life — while at the same time remaining hopelessly roped in by one’s family …” —Hedy Weiss, Chicago Sun-Times

“… THE END OF THE TOUR, an engaging new work … The dark comedy homes in on the interconnected lives of six characters who have reached a crossroads where they each must reevaluate their commitment to each other and decide what direction their own lives will take … Johnson’s dialogue — sharp and witty — has more than a little ring of truth in it that may have audience members identifying with the real-life idiosyncrasies of his characters.” —Tom Witom, Lakeland Newspapers

About the Author


  • Joel Drake Johnson

    Joel Drake Johnson is an award winning, internationally produced playwright and teacher who got his start as a writer at Chicago's critically acclaimed Econo-Art Theater (Lynn Baber, Barb Reeder and Marc Silvia, artistic directors). His latest play RASHEEDA SPEAKING, originally directed by Sandy Shinner and produced by Chicago’s Rivendell Theatre, opened in New York City at The Signature Theatre as part of The New Group’s 2014-15 season. Under the direction of Tony and Emmy Award Winner, Cynthia Nixon, it featured two time Oscar Winner, Dianne Wiest and Tony Award Winner, Tonya Pinkins as well as Darren Goldstein (“The Affair”) and Patricia Conolly (ensemble member/ Guthrie Theater and Stratford Festival). RASHEEDA was subsequently nominated for best new off-Broadway play by the The Outer Critics Circle. Other plays include FOUR PLACES first produced at Chicago’s Victory Gardens Theater under the direction of Sandy Shinner and featuring Mary Ann Thebus and Meg Thalken. It was subsequently produced in LA by The Rogue Machine Theatre, where under the direction of Robin Larsen and featuring Tony nominee, Roxanne Hart, it garnered more critical acclaim that included five Ovation Award nominations, four nominations (including best play) from the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle and a Garland Award for Best New Play. It has since been produced internationally. Johnson has won three Illinois Arts Council grants including one for A BLUE MOON which was first produced at Chicago Dramatists Theatre (Russ Tutterow, artistic director) and Woodstock, NY. Other works include AS THE BEAVER, first produced by Zebra Crossing, THE END OF THE TOUR first produced by Victory Gardens, and THE FALL TO EARTH which premiered at Steppenwolf Theatre and featured Tony Award Winner, Rondi Reed. It was subsequently produced at The Penguin Rep featuring Tony Award Winner, Michelle Pawk and directed by Joe Brancato; at 59E59 Theatre in NYC, featuring Tony nominee, Amelia Campbell (dir: Joe Brancato); The Odyssey Theatre in LA featuring Oscar nominee JoBeth Williams (dir: Robin Larsen). Berkeley’s Aurora Theatre produced the premiere of THE FIRST GRADE (dir: Tom Ross) which won the San Francisco/ Bay Area Critic Circle Award for best new play of 2010-11. Johnson has been commissioned four times by Steppenwolf Theatre, commissions which led to productions of A BLAMELESS LIFE (dir: Tony Award Winner, Anna D. Shapiro) and TRANQUILLITY WOODS (dir. Sandy Shinner). Johnson has been nominated 5 times for Best New Play by Chicago’s Joseph Jefferson Award Committee. He is currently working on a new play commissioned by Steppenwolf Theatre. He has taught playwriting at Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire, IL, DePaul University and Northwestern University.

About the Book

Book Information

Publisher BPPI
Publication Date 2/1/2007
Pages 80
ISBN 9780881453324

Special Notes

Special Notes

Licensees are required to include the original stage producers credits in the following form on the title page in all programs distributed in connection with performances of the Play and in all advertising in which the full cast appears in size of type not less than ten percent (10%) of the size of the title of the Play:

Originally produced at The Victory Gardens Theater, Chicago

The following must appear within all programs distributed in connection with performances of the Play:
The End of the Tour is produced
by special arrangement with Broadway Play Publishing Inc, NYC


Upcoming and Recent Productions


3/29/2019 – 4/6/2019
Seat Of The Pants Ensemble
Cleveland, OH