The National has also announced a staging of Hanif Kureishi's own adaptation of his novel The Black Album in a co-production with Tara Arts, which will begin performances in July in the Cottesloe.
Booking is being extended for the National's current production of England People Very Nice (which will now continue in repertory to Aug. 9), as well as the yet-to-open productions of Phedre (now extended to Aug. 27) and All's Well That Ends Well (now extended to Sept. 30). Sunday performances in the Olivier and Lyttelton Theatres will resume July 9, including all of these productions.
Every Good Boy Deserves Favour, which will play its return run in the Olivier Jan. 9-Feb. 17, 2010, is directed by Felix Barrett (artistic director of Punchdrunk, whose recent productions include Faust and The Masque of the Red Death) and Tom Morris (associate director of the National, currently represented in the West End by his co-direction of War Horse with Marianne Elliott, and who in September takes up a new appointment as artistic director of Bristol Old Vic). The play, co-produced with young professional orchestra Southbank Sinfonia, conducted by Simon Over, was originally staged by the RSC in 1977. The play revolves around a dissident who is locked up in an asylum. If he accepts that he was ill, has been treated and is now cured, he will be released. But he refuses. Sharing his cell is a real lunatic who believes himself to be surrounded by an orchestra. As the dissident's son begs his father to free himself with a lie, Stoppard's play asks if denying the truth is a price worth paying for liberty.
The production is designed by Bob Crowley, with lighting by Bruno Poet, choreography by Maxine Doyle and sound by Christopher Shutt. Southbank Sinfonia was set up in 2002 by Founder and Music Director Simon Over to support promising young performers who have just graduated from music college.
Hanif Kureishi's The Black Album, co-produced with Tara Arts, begins performances in the Cottesloe Theatre July 14, prior to an official opening July 21. Following its run at the National, it will embark on a national tour, including visits to the West Yorkshire Playhouse in Leeds (week commencing Oct. 20), Liverpool Playhouse (week commencing Oct. 27), Oxford Playhouse (week commencing Nov. 10), Warwick Arts Centre (week commencing Nov. 17) and Bath Theatre Royal (week commencing Nov. 23). Kureishi's owns stage adaptation of his novel considers how the events of 1989 – the year of the fatwa against Salman Rushdie – have shaped today's world, where fundamentalism battles liberalism. In the story, an Asian kid from Kent goes to college in London and teams up with a sympathetic group of anti-racists. But as Shahid begins a hedonistic affair with his lecturer, his radical Muslim friends want to steer him away from the decadence of the West.
Kureishi's other novels include "Something to Tell You," "Gabriel's Gift," "Intimacy" (adapted as a film) and the semi-autobiographical "The Buddha of Suburbia," which was adapted for television for the BBC. His plays include Sleep With Me and a version of Brecht's Mother Courage at the National, Birds of Passage (Hampstead), Soaking the Heat and Borderline (Royal Court). His screenplays include "My Beautiful Laundrette," "The Mother" and "Venus."
The play is directed by Jatinder Verma, co-founder and artistic director of Tara Arts, the pioneering cross-cultural theatre company which tours nationally and internationally, and marked its 30th year in 2007 with his production of The Tempest. He has previously directed Tartuffe, The Little Clay Cart and Cyrano de Bergerac for the Natinal Theatre.
The production will be designed by Tim Hatley, with costumes by Claudia Mayer, lighting by Jvan Morandi, video by Tom Hadley, music by Sister Bliss, choreography by Shobana Jeyasingh and sound by Fergus O'Hare. The cast comprises Alexander Andreou, Jonathan Bonnici, Tanya Franks, Sean Gallagher, Beruce Khan, Nitin Kundra, Shereen Martineau, Robert Mountford and Glyn Pritchard.
Booking for the public, by phone and online, for The Black Album, Every Good Boy Deserves Favour and the new performances of Phèdre, England People Very Nice and All's Well That Ends Well opens on May 14. To book tickets, contact the box office at 020 7452 3000 or visit www.nationaltheatre.org.uk.