New work by Inua Ellams, Yaёl Farber, DC Moore, Lindsey Ferrentino and Nina Raine is announced today by Rufus Norris, Director of the National Theatre. Four world premieres and two European premieres are further announced as forthcoming productions for the National Theatre in 2017.
Acclaimed writer and director Yaёl Farber returns to the National with the European premiere of Salomé and co-productions with Headlong, Fuel, West Yorkshire Playhouse, Out of Joint and Improbable are among the collaborations with theatre companies from across the UK.
Leading actors will include Imelda Staunton, Olivia Colman, Philip Quast, Nathan Lane, Andrew Garfield, Denise Gough, Russell Tovey, James McArdle, Susan Brown, Janie Dee, Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, Daniel Rigby, Tamara Lawrence, Doon Mackichan, Daniel Ezra and Olwen Fouere.
Here’s a breakdown by each theatre:
Follies, with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and a book by James Goldman, comes to the NT for the first time in 2017. NT Associate Director Dominic Cooke directs a cast including Imelda Staunton as Sally Durant Plummer, Janie Dee as Phyllis Rogers Stone and Philip Quast as Benjamin Stone.
There are few stories that have more of a vexed relationship to the western canon than that of Salomé. This radical revision of the biblical tale, in which a figure buried by history gains her voice, marks Yaёl Farber’s return to the Olivier following her acclaimed production of Les Blancs in 2016. The world premiere of Salomé was produced by Shakespeare Theatre Company, Washington DC, the NT production marks its European premiere and will be on stage in May 2017.
Common, a world premiere by DC Moore, will be directed by Jeremy Herrin in the Olivier Theatre. Set in the early days of the Industrial Revolution, the common land of England is under threat. An epic new history play co-produced with Headlong, this new production is part of the 2017 Travelex £15 ticket season.
As previously announced, Tamsin Greig will return to the National to play ‘Malvolia’ in Twelfth Night, opening in the Olivier in February 2017: the first of two Shakespearean productions being directed by Simon Godwin, who will later direct Ralph Fiennes in Antony and Cleopatra in 2018. Further casting for Twelfth Night includes Daniel Rigby as Aguecheek, Tamara Lawrence as Viola, Doon Mackichan as Feste and Daniel Ezra as Sebastian.
Ugly Lies the Bone by Lindsey Ferrentino makes its European premiere at the NT in March 2017. An American soldier is injured on tour in Afghanistan and returns to her family home. Through the use of virtual reality video game therapy, she builds a new world to escape her pain. Lindsey Ferrentino won the National Arts Club’s 2016 Kesselring Prize for Ugly Lies the Bone.
In May 2017, Marianne Elliott will direct Tony Kushner’s Angels in America, with Andrew Garfield returning to the National as Prior Walter. The company also includes Susan Brown, Nathan Lane, James McArdle, Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, Denise Gough and Russell Tovey. Millennium Approaches, the first of the two plays which form Angels in America, received its British premiere at the National’s Cottesloe Theatre in 1992, and was joined by Perestroika in a double-bill the following year.
My Country; A Work in Progress – In the days after the European Referendum in June 2016, the National Theatre began a national listening project. From Londonderry to Leicester and Merthyr Tydfil to Glasgow, the National Theatre has created a verbatim archive of conversations from across the UK. Rufus Norris will collaborate with Carol Ann Duffy as he directs a performance based on the first round of material.
Consent by Nina Raine will receive its world premiere in a co-production with Out of Joint in the Dorfman Theatre in April 2017. The play explores questions of law, justice and forgiveness. Directed by Roger Michell.
Mosquitoes by Lucy Kirkwood will have its world premiere in the Dorfman Theatre in July 2017. Rufus Norris will direct this new play about families and particle physics, with a cast that includes Olivia Colman. Mosquitoes is presented by special arrangement with Manhattan Theatre Club, which commissioned the play with funds provided by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.
Improbable and the National Theatre present: Lost Without Words, a theatrical experiment in the Dorfman Theatre in March 2017. Improbable have been improvising on stage all their lives then one day they had a mischievous fantasy: What would happen if they took older actors in their seventies and eighties, actors who had spent their lives on stage bringing life to a writer’s words, actors who now they are old appear in our theatres less and less – what would happen if we put those actors on stage without a script? What scenes would they create? What stories would unfold? What might they tell us about what awaits us all at the other end of life?
Inua Ellams’ Barber Shop Chronicles will have its world premiere at the National Theatre in June 2017, before moving to West Yorkshire Playhouse in July. This new play unfolds in a succession of barber shops across Africa and the UK. The play is directed by Bijan Sheibani and is a co-production with Fuel and West Yorkshire Playhouse. Director Bijan Sheibani; Designer Rae Smith.
On stage in the Dorfman Theatre in January 2017, Project Arts Centre presents Dublin Oldschool, a new play by Emmet Kirwan. A play about brothers, Dublin and dance music, Dublin Oldschool snaps, crackles, raps and rhymes, with high octane performances by Emmet Kirwan and Ian Lloyd Anderson, directed by Phillip McMahon. Project Arts Centre in association with Soho Theatre, supported by Culture Ireland.
Brussels-based BRONKS is one of Belgium’s leading theatres for young audiences and in January 2017, following its acclaimed and sell-out run at the Edinburgh Fringe, BRONKS brings Us/Them to the NT. During a hostage drama at a school in Beslan terrorists chose a group of children as their victims. Us/Them is not a straightforward account, it is about the individual way that children cope with extreme situations. With humour and a matter-of-fact approach, it contrasts the views of children with those of adults. On stage in the Dorfman from 16 January – 18 February 2017. BRONKS and Richard Jordan Productions in association with Theatre Royal Plymouth, Big in Belgium and Summerhall.