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News and Events

Backstage Whispers overheard by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 23rd January 2015

It's Official! As previously forecast here, the current Broadway production of Bernard Pomerance's The Elephant Man, the story of a man disfigured by disease who rose from a Victorian travelling freak show to become the toast of London society, with Bradley Cooper, Patricia Clarkson and Alessandro Nivola, directed by Scott Ellis, will transfer to the Haymarket Theatre from 19th May.

Forthcoming productions at the National Theatre will include in the Olivier: the morality play Everyman, in a new adaptation by Carol Ann Duffy, with Chiwetel Ejiofor, directed by Rufus Norris, opening on 29th April; George Farquhar's restoration comedy The Beaux' Stratagem, directed by Simon Godwin, opening on 26th May; Timberlake Wertenbaker's Our Country's Good, set around a theatre production of George Farquhar's The Recruiting Officer mounted by a convict settlement in Australia in the 1780s, directed by Nadia Fall; Shakespeare's As You Like It, directed by Polly Findlay; and a new musical, book by Moira Buffini, music and lyrics by Damon Albarn, inspired by Lewis Carroll's Alice In Wonderland, directed by Rufus Norris, with choreography by Javier de Frutos.

In the Lyttelton: the premiere of Caryl Churchill's Light Shining In Buckinghamshire, set in the aftermath of the English Civil War, with Trystan Gravelle, Joshua James and Ashley McGuire, directed by Lyndsey Turner, opening on 23rd April; Stephen Adly Guigis's The Motherf**ker With The Hat, a high-octane, verbal cage match about love, fidelity, and misplaced haberdashery, directed by Indhu Rubasingham, opening on 10th June; Ivan Turgenev's A Month In The Country, in a new version written and directed by Patrick Marber entitled Three Days In The Country, with Amanda Drew; the recent Bristol Old Vic production of Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre, directed by Sally Cookson; D H Lawrence's trilogy set in a mining community Husbands And Sons, adapted into one play by Ben Power, with Anne-Marie Duff, directed by Marianne Elliott; Harley Granville Barker's Waste, in which a pioneering politician's work is compromised by his private life, directed by Roger Michell; and August Wilson's Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, dealing with race, art, religion and the exploitation of black recording artists, directed by Dominic Cooke.

In the Dorfman: the premieres of Patrick Marber's The Red Lion, set in the world of semi-professional football, with Daniel Mays, Calvin Demba and Peter Wight, directed by Ian Rickson, opening on 10th June; Duncan Macmillan's People, Places And Things, directed by Jeremy Herrin; Wallace Shawn's Evening At The Talk House; and Caryl Churchill's Here We Go, directed by Dominic Cooke.

On The Casting Couch: Imelda Staunton will be joined by Lara Pulver and Peter Davison in the Arthur Laurents-Jule Styne-Stephen Sondheim musical Gypsy, opening at the Savoy Theatre on 15th April; and Damian Lewis will be joined by John Goodman and Tom Sturridge in David Mamet's American Buffalo, opening at Wyndham's Theatre on 27th April.

Jim Dale will bring his hit Off Broadway one man biographical show Just Jim Dale, directed by Richard Maltby Jnr, to the Vaudeville Theatre for a 6 week season opening on 28th May.

It has been confirmed that Oscar Wilde's The Importance Of Being Earnest, the 'trivial comedy for serious people' with David Suchet as Lady Bracknell, and Emily Barber, Michael Benz, Philip Cumbus, Imogen Doel, Michele Dotrice and Richard O'Callaghan, directed by Adrian Noble, will open at the Vaudeville Theatre on 24th June.


Opening This Week

Taken At Midnight - Haymarket
The Chichester Festival Theatre premiere production of Mark Hayhurst's play in which the mother of the anti-Nazi German lawyer Hans Litten confronts those who have imprisoned her son, with Penelope Wilton.
Dara - National Lyttelton
Tanya Ronder’s adaptation of Shahid Nadeem’s novel following the two heirs of the Muslim Empire as they embark on a ferocious fight for succession in the imperial court of Mughal India in 1659, directed by Nadia Fall.
The Ruling Class - Trafalgar Studios 1
Peter Barnes’s satire in which a paranoid schizophrenic with a Messiah complex inherits an Earldom, with James McAvoy, Ron Cook, Joshua McGuire, Kathryn Drysdale, Anthony O'Donnell and Serana Evans.
The Hard Problem - National Dorfman
The premiere of Tom Stoppard’s play in which a psychology researcher at a brainscience institute ponders 'what is consciousness?', with Anthony Calf, Olivia Vinall, Jonathan Coy and Vera Chok, directed by Nicholas Hytner.
Di And Viv And Rose - Vaudeville
The Hampstead Theatre production of Amelia Bullmore's play about how three university friends face challenges as they progress through life, with Tamzin Outhwaite, Samantha Spiro and Jenna Russell.


First Nights

26th - Taken At Midnight - Haymarket
27th - Dara - National Lyttelton
27th - The Ruling Class - Trafalgar Studios 1
28th - The Hard Problem - National Dorfman
28th - Di And Viv And Rose - Vaudeville
3rd - L’Ormindo - Wanamaker
10th - How To Hold Your Breath - Royal Court
16th - A View From The Bridge - Wyndham’s
20th - Farinelli And The King - Wanamaker


24th - Henry IV Parts 1 & 2 - Barbican Theatre
31st - Tree - Old Vic
31st - King Charles III - Wyndham’s
3rd - 3 Winters - National Lyttelton
7th - City Of Angels - Donmar Warehouse
21st - The Scottsboro Boys - Garrick