The Royal National Theatre has announced new booking period covering some performances from 12th Aug 02 to 23rd Nov 02.


Ivanov, by Anton Chekhov, in a new version by David Harrower, opens 10th Sep 02, following previews from 2nd Sep 02, and running to 12th Oct 02 in the Cottesloe.

Directed by Katie Mitchell, the play features Paul Rhys in the title role, with Juliet Aubrey, Robert Bowman, Sarah Flind, Gillian Hanna, Stuart McQuarrie, Bridget Turner, Indira Varma, Philip Voss and Peter Wight. It is designed by Vicki Mortimer, with lighting by Paule Constable.

Set in a country suffering from political, ideological and spiritual stagnation, Chekhov's first full-length play anticipates the explosive revolutionary atmosphere of Russia at the turn of the century. Ivanov, a driving force in local government and a visionary landowner, feels burnt out at thirty-five. Once the pioneer of scientific farming methods and of education for the peasants, he now drowns in bureaucracy and debt, his large estate neglected. While his wife is dying, Sasha, a young, educated woman, falls in love with Ivanov and determines to save him.


A Streetcar Named Desire, by Tennessee Williams, opens 8th Oct 02, following previews from 28th Sep 02 and running to 23rd Nov 02 at the Lyttelton. Directed by Trevor Nunn, the play features Glenn Close (Blanche DuBois ) and Iain Glen (Stanley Kowalski). It is designed by Bunny Christie, with lighting by Paul Pyant.

Blanche DuBois, a faded and fragile Southern belle, arrives to visit her younger sister Stella, now living in a seedy district of New Orleans. Blanche is near the end of a downhill path in her life, but she comes repeatedly into confrontation with Stella's sexually aggressive husband, Stanley Kowalski, whose coarseness both offends and attracts her educated sensitivity. As jazz from the local bars blares through the night, tensions rise to an inevitable breaking point.

Lessness, by Samuel Beckett, opens 25th Sep 02 , following previews from 24th Sep 02 and running to 4th Oct 02 at the Cottesloe Theatre.Produced by Gare St Lazare Players, this production is directed by Judy Hegarty and features Olwen Fouere. With a running time of 50 minutes, this is the stage premiere of Beckett's prose work. Originally written in French under the title 'Sans', it is a concentrated and potent text which decribes a lanscape of the soul through a voice in the dark.

**Postal and fax booking opens for these productions for the general public on 8th July, with general telephone and counter booking opening on 29th July 02

Casting Updates at the National....

Sanctuary , by Tanika Gupta, opening 29th July 02, following previews from 25th July and running to 10th Aug 02 at the Lyttelton Loft. Cast includes. Nitin Ganatra, Barbara Jefford, Eddie Nestor, Sarah Solemani, Susannah Wise and Leo Wringer

Play Without Words , devised by Matthew Bourne, opening 23rd Aug 02 , following previews from 20 Aug and running to 14th Sep at the Lyttelton . Cast includes. Scott Ambler, Belinda Lee Chapman, Saranne Curtin, Will Kemp, Stephen Kirkham, Michela Meazza, Eddie Nixon, Alan Vincent, Ewan Wardrop and Richard Winsor

The Associate , by Simon Bent, opening 19th Aug 02, following previews from 15th Aug and running to 31st Aug 02 at the Lyttelton Loft. Cast includes. John Normington, Matthew Rhys and Nicolas Tennant

Closing Time , a new play by Owen McCafferty, opening 9th Sep 02, following previews from 5th Sep and running to 21st Sep 02 at the Lyttelton Loft. Cast includes. Pam Ferris and Patrick O’Kane

Latest Platforms announced at the National....

The Coast of Utopia : Trevor Nunn
6 Sep 02 / 6pm Olivier (£3.50)
Trevor Nunn discusses his work on the three plays.

Peter Ustinov
12 Sep 02 / 6pm Olivier (£3.50)
He talks about his authorised biography, 'The Gift of Laughter', with author John Miller

Judi Dench
13 Sep 02 / 6pm Olivier (£3.50)
Talks about the updated edition of John Miller's biography, 'With a Crack in her Voice'.

17 Sep 02 / 6pm Cottesloe (£3.50)
The director Katie Mitchell talks about her work on "Ivanov"

Shakespeare's Words
7 Oct 02 / 6pm Cottesloe (£3.50)
Shakespeare thrills and inspires but, zounds!, the language can be baffling. The first known user of numerous modern words from assassination to zany, many of his words have fallen out of use. Father and son team David and Ben Crystal, authors of Shakespeare's Words: A Glossary and Language Companion, present their entertaining and enlightening guide.

The Coast of Utopia : Tom Stappard
8 Oct 02 / 6pm Olivier (£3.50)
The playwright Tom Stoppard talks about his epic trilogy

Shakespeare For All Time
9 Oct 02 / 6pm Cottesloe (£3.50)
From the entry of Shakespeare's birth in the Stratford church register to a recent Norwegian production of Macbeth in which the hero was represented by a tomato, distinguished scholar Stanley Wells tells the story of Shakespeare's life, his writings and his afterlife.

Diary of a Madman
11 & 18 Oct 02 / 6pm Olivier (£3.50)
As a perfect curtain-raiser to The Coast of Utopia, Simon Day, who plays Nikolai Ogarev in the trilogy, performs his intimate one-man version of Diary of a Madman. A tale of frustrated love across the social divide, from Gogol's St Petersburg Stories of 1835.

Full details of all Royal National productions

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