London's National Theatre Announces March to June Repertory Dates and Further Casting

News   London's National Theatre Announces March to June Repertory Dates and Further Casting
 
The National Theatre has confirmed dates and announced further casting for the previously announced productions of Thomas Middleton's Women Beware Women, Terence Rattigan's After the Dance, Drew Pautz's Love the Sinner, plus the transfer of Northampton's Royal and Derngate productions of Eugene O'Neill's Beyond the Horizon and Tennessee Williams' Spring Storm.

In addition, comedians Stewart Lee and Mark Thomas will appear for one night each only in the Olivier Theatre on April 6 and 7 respectively.

Marianne Elliott's production of Thomas Middleton's Women Beware Women, that launches this year's Travelex £10 season in the Olivier Theatre, will begin performances April 20, prior to an official opening April 27. In addition to the previously announced Harriet Walter and Samuel Barnett, the cast will also include Sioned Jones, Vanessa Kirby, Harry Melling, Lauren O'Neil, Tilly Tremayne and Andrew Woodall. The production will be designed by Lez Brotherston, with lighting by Neil Austin, music by Olly Fox, choreography by Arthur Pita and sound by Ian Dickinson. In press materials, the play is described as a blackly funny, fast and ferocious tragedy in which corruption will not go unpunished.

Terence Rattigan's 1939 play After the Dance will begin performances June 1 prior to an official opening June 8 in the Lyttelton Theatre. Thea Sharrock returns to the National, where she previously directed The Emperor Jones and Happy Now>, to direct; designs are by Hildegard Bechtler, with lighting by Mark Henderson and sound by Ian Dickinson. In press materials, the play is described as offering "a subtle, witty unmasking of the hedonistic '20s generation and a devastating study of repression and the human heart." This new production will launch a series of events leading up to the centenary of Terence Rattigan's birth in 2011.

Drew Pautz's new play Love the Sinner will begin performances May 4, prior to an official opening May 11, in the Cottesloe Theatre. Matthew Dunster directs, with designs by Anna Fleischle, lighting by Philip Gladwell, music by Jules Maxwell and sound by Paul Arditti. The cast includes Fiston Barek, Paul Bentall, Nancy Crane, Jonathan Cullen, Sam Graham, Robert Gwilym, Scott Handy, Louis Mahoney, Charlotte Randle, Ian Redford and Richard Rees. In the play, an international group of church leaders converge in an African hotel to contend the need for Christian doctrine to change with the times. Fierce theological debate demonstrates that what's current thinking on one continent is abhorrent to another. In a neighboring room, a brief sexual encounter between Joseph, a local porter, and Michael, a British conference volunteer, leads to a direct and potent challenge both to Michael, as he returns to England to grapple with ethics of his own, and to the liberal claims and professed compassion of the affluent West and its church. According to press materials, the play considers what we may be willing to sacrifice, personally and in the public sphere, for what we believe to be right.

Northampton's Royal and Derngate productions of O'Neill's Beyond the Horizon and Williams' Spring Storm transfer to the Cottesloe, as previously announced, to begin performances March 24, before opening officially April 7. Directed by Laurie Sansom, the company for both plays comprises Joanna Bacon, Robin Bowerman, Steven France, Gavin Harrison, James Jordan, Jacqueline King, Michael Malarkey, Janice McKenzie, Ailish Symons, Michael Thomson, Anna Tolputt and Liz White. The productions are designed by Sara Perks, with lighting by Chris Davey, music by Jon Nicholls and sound by Christopher Shutt. The productions showcase the early work of two of America’s greatest writers. Beyond the Horizon is a Pultizer prize-winning drama that formulated Eugene O’Neill’s vision of America. Robert is about to start a new life across the ocean, whilst brother Andy is settling on the family farm. But the realisation that they love the same woman results in a dramatic reversal of fate. Spring Storm, which received its European premiere in this production, revolves around Heavenly, who has almost everything a young woman could desire. But when she’s forced to decide between respectable suitor Arthur and handsome, wild lover Dick, her actions cause a chain of consequences that tear their lives apart. Stewart Lee will present his latest comedy show, If You Prefer a Milder Comedian, Please Ask for One, recently seen at the Leicester Square Theatre, for one night only in the Olivier Theatre April 6. The show begins in a high street coffee chain and ends in a pear cider which is 100 percent disappointment. Lee was co-writer and director of Jerry Springer – The Opera which premiered at the National in 2003, and has recently been seen on television in "Stewart Lee's Comedy Vehicle."

Thomas will present The Manifesto – Election Special: for one night only in the Olivier Theatre April 7. The comedian, activist and Guinness World Record Holder for Most Number of Political Demonstrations in 24 Hours, "has been trawling a nation that is economically, politically and socially drifting up a certain well-known creek – and with the audience's help, creating The People's Manifesto."

Public phone and online bookings for all productions between March and June opens Feb. 17. To book tickets, contact the box office on 020 7452 3000, or visit www.nationaltheatre.org.uk

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