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A Very Expensive Poison Tickets

A Very Expensive Poison Tickets

20 Aug 2019 - 5 Oct 2019

A Very Expensive Poison Information

Lucy Prebble's long-awaited drama based on the assassination of Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko gets its world premiere at the Old Vic theatre in 2019, directed by John Crowley. Tickets for A Very Expensive Poison are available now. 

Litvinenko worked as a spy for the FSB specialising in organised crime before he was arrested on charges of 'exceeding the authority of his position', after he accused senior officials of ordering the assassination of Russian tycoon Boris Berezovsky. He fled to England with his family in 2000 and was granted asylum, but in 2006, he was hospitalised and later died after being poisoned with radioactive polonium. 

In 2016, Luke Harding's book A Very Expensive Poison - on which this play is based - delved into this shocking case to explore whether this could have been ordered by Russia's very highest in command. 

A Very Expensive Poison is at the Old Vic from 20th August to 5th October 2019. 

Lucy Prebble's previous plays include ENRON (Noel Coward), The Effect (National Theatre) and The Sugar Syndrome (Royal Court Theatre). 

A Very Expensive Poison tickets are available now. 

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Run time

3hrs 5min (inc. interval)

Opening date

August 20th, 2019

Closing date

October 5th, 2019


Old Vic


Recommend age: 12+

Cast and creative

By: Lucy Prebble, based on the book by Luke Harding
Director: John Crowley
Cast list: Thomas Arnold, Tom Brooke, MyAnna Buring, Callum Coates, Marc Graham, Amanda Hadingue, Yasmine Holness-Dove, Lloyd Hutchinson, Robyn Moore, Peter Polycarpou, Sarah Seggari, Michael Shaeffer, Reece Shearsmith, Gavin Spokes, Bea Svistunenko
Design: Tom Scutt
Lighting: Mimi Jordan Sherin
Costume: Tom Scutt
Sound: Paul Arditti

Our review

A Very Expensive Poison

"In a way, it's an anti-thriller. But I must never ever say that," says playwright Lucy Prebble in a programme note about her new, expansive and intriguing play A Very Expensive Poison, based on Guardian journalist Luke Harding's 2018 book about the Russian state-sanctioned 2006 murder of former Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko, by then a British citizen living in London.Prebble's play similarly unpacks the often-unsayable in its dogged pursuit of revealing the truth of how he came to die,...

Latest A Very Expensive Poison News & Features

Casting has been announced for Lucy Prebble's new play A Very Expensive Poison, based on Luke Harding's book about the assassination of Alexander Litvinenko, which opens at the Old Vic next month.Tom Brooke will play Litvinenko, the Russian spy who was poisoned in London after he defected to MI6. Litvinenko died in London in November 2006 after being poisoned with the radionuclide polonium-210.Lloyd Hutchinson and Michael Shaeffer will play Dimitri Kotvun and Andrei Luguvoi, the two former...

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