The new production of Salome is presented by Headlong and Leicester's Curve Theatre, originating at the latter May 5 prior to a national tour, which will culminate with a run at Hampstead Theatre, beginning June 22, prior an official opening June 24.
It will run there through July 17. The production is directed by Jamie Lloyd, whose recent credits include Piaf (Donmar Warehouse, then West End's Vaudeville), Three Days of Rain and the current West End production of Douglas Carter Beane's The Little Dog Laughed, now running at the Garrick Theatre. It has sets and costumes designed by Soutra Gilmour, with lighting by Jon Clark, sound design by composers Max and Ben Ringham, and movement direction by Ann Yee. The cast will include Zawe Ashton, Tom Byam Shaw, Vyelle Croom, Sam Donovan, Jaye Griffiths, Con O’Neill and Seun Shote.
According to press materials, Lloyd's production will bring Wilde’s collision of ancient myth and twentieth century decadence bang up to date. The play revolves around Salome, step-daughter of King Herod, who agrees to perform the mysterious dance of the seven veils but demands in return the head of the King's most infamous prisoner: The head of John the Baptist. Headlong previously collaborated with Hampstead Theatre on Rupert Goold's production of Faustus in 2006; and Curve and Hampstead previously collaborated on a revival of Philip Ridley's The Fastest Clock in the Universe in 2009.
The House of Bilquis Bibi is adapted from Lorca's The House of Bernarda Alba by Sudha Bhuchar. It is presented in a co-production by Tamasha, who previously staged A Fine Balance at Hampstead Theatre in 2006, and Harrogate Theatre. The production premieres at Hampstead Theatre, beginning performances July 22, prior to an official opening July 26, for a run through Aug. 14.
It is directed by Kristine Landon-Smith, who is co-founder and artistic director of Tamasha with Bhuchar, a company that celebrates its 21st birthday season with this production. The production is designed by Sue Mayes, with lighting by Natasha Chivers and sound design by Mike Furness. According to press materials, Lorca's 1936 play is relocated to Jhang, a small town in the fertile Punjab region of Pakistan. It is uncomfortably hot, and amongst the mango groves and orchards lies the house of Bilquis Bibi. Inside, a family mourns. With her husband gone, Bilquis must uphold her family’s honour at all costs - the fates of five unmarried daughters lie in her hands. Her solution: to marry off eldest daughter Abida to their cousin Pappo, who is visiting Pakistan from the US. Bilquis turns a blind eye to the illicit nightly visits Pappo pays to his fiancée’s balcony. But as she slowly realizes that more than one daughter is staying awake for him, the temperature in the house rises and a tragedy unfolds.
Hampstead Theatre is currently hosting the RSC's production of Dennis Kelly's The Gods Weep, running through April 3. Other future dates include the previously announced co-productions with Out of Joint of Sebastian Barry's new play Andersen's English (running April 7-May 8) and with Liverpool Everyman and English Touring Theatre of Jonathan Harvey's Canary (running May 17-June 12).
To book tickets, contact the box office at 020 7722 9301, or visit www.hampsteadtheatre.com.