New Donmar Season to Feature McKellen, Ravenhill and Beale

News   New Donmar Season to Feature McKellen, Ravenhill and Beale
The Donmar Warehouse has announced details of its forthcoming season. Many of the productions had previously been reported, although new news includes the premiere of a Mark Ravenhill play starring Ian McKellen.
Ian McKellen
Ian McKellen Photo by Aubrey Reuben

As has been known for some time, Neil LaBute’s This Is How It Goes will be followed by Schiller’s Mary Stuart (in a new version by Peter Oswald) beginning July 14 and featuring Janet McTeer, Harriet Walter, David Burke, James Fleet, Barbara Jefford and Rory Kinnear. Phyllida Lloyd will direct.

After that, Christopher Hampton’s The Philanthropist gets a revival, starring Simon Russell Beale. The Prime Minister and his cabinet have been murdered and England’s finest writers are being killed, while a university don tries to make sense of everything. Simon Russell Beale was in Sam Mendes’ farewell double-bill as artistic director of the Donmar, playing the title role in Uncle Vanya and Malvolio in Twelfth Night. The Philanthropist will begin previews Sept. 8 and open Sept. 13.

Kathy Burke will give Sam Shepard’s black comedy, Gods of Hell, its European premiere. Burke, noted as both an actress (on screen as well as stage) and a director, will stick to directing duties here. The show will begin previews Oct. 20, opening Oct. 26.

Michael Grandage will direct Ibsen’s rarely seen The Wild Duck in a new version by David Eldridge (who recently had such a success with Festen at the Almeida). It will begin previews Dec. 8 and open Dec. 13.

And, McKellen, fresh from reviving his Widow Twanky at the Old Vic’s Aladdin over Christmas 2005 (and a stint in “Coronation Street,” a long-running TV soap opera he admires), will act in Mark Ravenhill’s new play The Cut. Ravenhill’s most widely performed play is Shopping and F*cking; his last shows were 2001’s Mother Clap’s Molly House for the National (which transferred to the West End) and Totally Over You for the 2003 NT Shell Connections Festival. The Cut will be directed by Grandage. The Donmar season will be principally sponsored by SAP. For more information, call (0)870 890 1109.

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