Co-produced with young professional orchestra Southbank Sinfonia, conducted by Simon Over, this play for actors and musicians 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 directed by Felix Barrett (artistic director of Punchdrunk, whose recent productions include Faust and The Masque of the Red Death) and Tom Morris (now artistic director at Bristol's Old Vic but formerly associate director of the National Theatre, for whom he is currently represented in the West End by his co-direction of the transfer of War Horse with Marianne Elliott).
It 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.
The company comprises Jonathan Aris, Lizzie Barker, Julian Bleach, Jason Cheater, Pandora Colin, Shea Davis, Sarah Dowling, Conor Doyle, Geir Hytten, Rob McNeill, Emily Mytton, Wesley Nelson, Peter Pacey, Fernanda Prata, Vinicius Salles, Adrian Schiller and Dan Winter.
To book tickets, contact the box office on 020 7452 3000, or visit www.nationaltheatre.org.uk