Yasmina Reza's 1994 comedy was the darling hit play of the 90s notching up long runs in the West End, Broadway as well as a considerable life on UK tour. Artistic director of the Old Vic Michael Warchus has brought together the original creative team to present a new production some twenty years later, and whilst it remains affable and spiky in its presentation of male relationships it doesn't quite hit the mark in terms of substance or nuance. Read more
‘Three friends and a white painting.’
One of the most acclaimed plays of recent times, Art premiered in London twenty years ago and went on to become a phenomenon, winning the Molière Award for Best Commercial Production, the Evening Standard for Best Comedy, the Olivier Award for Best New Comedy and the Tony Award for Best New Play. Director Matthew Warchus reunites the entire original creative team to revisit Yasmina Reza’s dazzling study of friendship, prejudice and tolerance.
Art focuses on three friends and a white painting and raises questions of how our choices differ from those we are closest to and the strain these differences can place on our relationships. Billed as a “dazzling study of friendship, prejudice and tolerance”, the play was translated from Yasmin Reza’s French text by Christopher Hampton.
The original production of Art starred Albert Finney, Tom Courtenay and Ken Stott and opened on Broadway with Alan Alda, Victor Garber and Alfred Molina as the three friends – Marc, Serge and Yvan. For the 2016 production, Tim Key, Paul Ritter and Rufus Sewell will portray the friends.
Tim Key returns to the Old Vic having starred in Tree in 2015. He is known for his television appearances in Peep Show, Foreign Bodies and Midmorning Matters, starring alongside Alan Partridge. Key will take on the role of Yvan.
Paul Ritter returns to the Old Vic having starred in The Norman Conquests in 2008, received an Olivier Award nomination as well as a Tony Award nomination for its Broadway transfer. Other credits include performances in Coram Boy at the National Theatre, The Audience opposite Dame Helen Mirren and the original cast of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Ritter is cast as Marc.
Rufus Sewell can currently be seen on television in ITV1’s Victoria. Last seen on stage in Closer at the Donmar Warehouse, Sewell won an Olivier Award for his 2006 performance in Rock N’ Roll and was also nominated for Arcadia at the National Theatre. He can be seen on screen in A Knight’s Tale, The Holiday and Dark City. Sewell will portray Serge.