New Stage Version of George Orwell's 1984 to Transfer to London's Almeida Theatre
By Mark Shenton
1984, a new stage adaptation of George Orwell's dystopian masterpiece jointly written and co-directed by Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan, will transfer to London's Almeida Theatre, co-produced by the Almeida with Headlong and Nottingham Playhouse, where it premiered. It will begin performances Feb. 8, 2014, prior to an official opening Feb. 13, for a run through March 29.
Originally produced by Headlong and Nottingham Playhouse, this production had its world premiere at Nottingham Playhouse in September and has enjoyed a hugely successful U.K. tour, which ends Nov. 16 at the West Yorkshire Playhouse in Leeds.
The entire cast will remain with the production for the Almeida Theatre run: Mark Arends, Tim Dutton, Stephen Fewell, Christopher Patrick Nolan, Matthew Spencer, Gavin Spokes, Mandi Symonds and Hara Yannas.
Orwell's original novel, published in 1949, is one of the most influential novels in recent history, with its chilling depiction of perpetual war, pervasive government surveillance and incessant public mind-control. Its ideas have become our ideas, and Orwell’s fiction is often said to be our reality. According to press materials, this production — which filters the spirit and the ambition of the novel through the lens of contemporary culture — explores surveillance culture, identity and how thinking you can fly might actually be the first step to flying.
Icke, previously associate director at Headlong with Goold, recently joined Goold as associate at the Almeida. For Headlong, he worked with Goold to conceive and develop Decade, and directed Ella Hickson's Boys and a U.K. tour of Romeo and Juliet.
The production is designed by Chloe Lamford, with lighting by Natasha Chivers, sound by Tom Gibbons and video designed by Tim Reid.
It concludes a trilogy of co-productions between the Almeida and Headlong that began with Chimerica, which opened at the Almeida in May before transferring to the West End, and their current co-production of American Psycho, which performances at the Almeida Dec. 3.
Priority booking opens for members Oct. 29, with public booking from Nov. 5. To book tickets, contact the box office on 020 7359 4404 or visit www.almeida.co.uk for more details.
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