London's Almeida Theatre to Offer New Play by Mike Bartlett and U.K. Premiere for Anne Washburn's Mr. Burns

By Mark Shenton
12 Feb 2014

London's Almeida Theatre will offer the world premiere of Mike Bartlett's King Charles III, described as a "future history play" about the U.K.'s next monarch, and the U.K. premiere of Anne Washburn's Mr. Burns, described as a "post electric play" that offers a vision of post-apocalyptic America. It premiered at New York's Playwrights Horizons Theatre in 2013.



King Charles III will begin performances April 3 prior to an official opening April 10, for a run through May 31. It reunites playwright Mike Bartlett with director Rupert Goold, artistic director of the Almeida, who previously directed the premiere of his play Earthquakes in London at the National Theatre. Bartlett was also one of the writers of Decade that Goold also directed.

According to press materials, the play looks at what happens after the Queen dies. After a lifetime of waiting, the prince ascends the throne for a future of power. But how is he to rule? The play "explores the people underneath the crowns, the unwritten rules of our democracy, and the conscience of Britain's most famous family."

Bartlett's previous plays include Artefacts, Cock, Love Love Love, Bull, Chariots of Fire, Contractions, My Child, Medea and 13.

Mr Burns, which will begin performances June 5 prior to an official opening June 12 for a run through July 19, will be directed by Robert Icke, who recently joined the Almeida as associate director, where he is currently represented by directing 1984.

In the play, it's the end of everything in contemporary America. A future without power. But what will survive? A much-loved episode of "The Simpsons" is recalled by a group of survivors. The story is told again and again, handed down over the years, reshaping along the way as it becomes mythology. According to press materials, the play asks whether the stories we tell make us the people we are, explodes the boundaries between pop and high culture and, when society has crumbled, imagines the future of America's most famous TV family.

Washburn's previous plays include The Internationalist, Apparition, The Communist Dracula Pageant, I Have Loved Strangers, The Small, The Ladies and A Devil at Noon.

To book tickets, available to members from Feb. 18 and on general sale from Feb. 25, contact the box office on 0207 359 4404 or visit almeida.co.uk.