National Theatre Sets London Dates for August: Osage County

News   National Theatre Sets London Dates for August: Osage County
 
The cool British reserve is about to get a shot of incendiary Midwestern truth-tellin'.

Amy Morton in August: Osage County.
Amy Morton in August: Osage County. Photo by Michael Brosilow

Steppenwolf Theatre Company's production of the Pulitzer and Tony Award-winning American play August: Osage County by Tracy Letts will play an eight-week engagement at London's National Theatre, at the Lyttelton Theatre, Nov. 21, 2008-Jan. 21, 2009.

Anna D. Shapiro again directs the acclaimed three-act, three-and-a-half hour family soap opera on American themes. The production is still playing Broadway's Music Box. Some members of the original Steppenwolf and Broadway cast are expected to appear in the London run, but casting has not been announced.

Nicholas Hytner, director of the National Theatre said, "The National Theatre is thrilled to renew its association with Steppenwolf, and to host the company that represents for London audiences the American theatre at its most exciting. August: Osage County is a tremendous play; the Steppenwolf production of it lifted me out of my seat. I could not be happier to be presenting it to the British public and to be continuing the relationship between the great theatre cities of London and Chicago."

Martha Lavey, artistic director of Steppenwolf Theatre Company, where the play premiered in 2007 prior to being plucked up by Broadway producers, added, "It's an honor to return to the National Theatre where 20 years ago, we brought our production of The Grapes of Wrath. Like Grapes, August: Osage County is a large American story animated by the artistry of the Steppenwolf ensemble. We are thrilled to bring this work to the National, a theatre we deeply respect and admire."

For ticket information and performance times, visit www.nationaltheatre.org.uk. A U.S. national tour will launch in August 2009 at the Curran Theatre in San Francisco. Subsequent U.S. tour engagements will be announced shortly.

August: Osage County "tells the explosively funny tale of the Weston clan, triggered by the recent disappearance of the family patriarch. With rich insight and brilliant humor, Letts' critically-acclaimed play paints a vivid portrait of a Midwestern family at a critical turning point."

The National Theatre production will feature the original Chicago and Broadway design team: Todd Rosenthal (sets), Ana Kuzmanic (costumes), Ann G. Wrightson (lights), Richard Woodbury (sound), David Singer (original music) and Chuck Coyl (fight choreography).

August: Osage County received the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for Tracy Letts and five 2008 Tony Awards, including Best Play—Tracy Letts, Best Direction—Anna D. Shapiro, Best Leading Actress—Deanna Dunagan, Best Featured Actress—Rondi Reed and Best Scenic Design—Todd Rosenthal.

August: Osage County is currently playing Broadway's Music Box Theatre (239 West 45th Street), following its premiere and sold-out run at Chicago's Steppenwolf Theatre Company in 2007. August: Osage County opened at Broadway's Imperial Theatre on Dec. 4, 2007.

For additional information, visit www.nationaltheatre.org.uk.

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