National Theatre New Season July - Nov 2013

The National Theatre has announced its schedule July to November 2013, which includes two new productions in the main houses of Olivier & Lyttelton, and several in The Shed. Also new platforms, including the National’s 50th Anniversary celebrations.

Public Booking opens 1 July 2013 for new productions in Olivier & Lyttelton, and 18 July 2013 for new productions in The Shed.


by Christopher Marlowe, opens 4 Sep 2013, following previews from 28 Aug, closing 26 Oct 2013. Directed by Joe Hill-Gibbins, starring John Heffernan (Edward II), Vanessa Kirby (Queen Isabella), Kyle Soller (Gaveston), Ben Addis, Alex Beckett, Paul Bentall, Kobna Holdbrook-Smith, Bettrys Jones,Nathaniel Martello-White, Matthew Pidgeon, David Sibley. A contemporary take. Hot on the heels of his coronation, Edward II recalls his lover Gaveston from exile, lavishing him with titles and riches. Their all-consuming lust makes enemies of the furious barons and bishops, alienates the King’s once-devoted Queen and tears England to pieces. Ultimately, the monarch himself is destroyed as are many of those who stood both at his side and in his way.



Music and lyrics by Tori Amos and book and lyrics by Samuel Adamson, opens 9 Oct 2013, following previews from 25 Sep - booking to 2 Jan 2014. Directed by Marianne Elliott, cast includes Rosalie Craig (Althea), Nick Hendrix (Digby), Clive Rowe, Hal Fowler, Amy Booth-Steel, Stephanie Bron, Vivien Carter, James Charlton, Owain Gwynn, Nicola Hart, C J Johnson, Luke Johnson, David Langham, Richard Lowe, Tommy Luther, Jamie Muscato, Emma Norin, Malinda Parris, Kane Oliver Parry, Adam Pearce, Caspar Phillipson, Laura Pitt-Pulford, Nuno Silva, Phoebe Street, Ben Thompson, Lynne Wilmot. A dark fairytale about grief, rebellion and the power of love. Once in opposing kingdoms lived a princess and a prince who had lost their mothers. Althea, unable to cry, became light with grief and floated, and so was locked away. Digby became so heavy-hearted that he could never smile, and so was trained as a warrior. One day, he declares war. Althea is forced out of hiding and down to ground but, in defiance of her father, she escapes, only to encounter the solemn prince on contested land. Beside a lake the warring heirs begin a passionate and illicit affair. But for Althea to find real love, she must first confront the world’s darkness and face her own deepest fears.



Limited Editions (9 to 21 Sep 2013) - 5 new theatre-makers visit the Shed for a series of limited runs...

9 to 11 Sep 2013
written & performed by Timothy X Atack. A Sleepdogs production. There’s a concert orchestra, trapped in a city during a military coup. As violence erupts, with pitched battles breaking out around them, the orchestra becomes separated – lost – hoping and trying to find their way back to each other. The composer is left to tell the story.

12 to 14 Sep 2013
by Little Bulb. Explore the political whirlwind that was the 1980s. It's the decade of all or nothing and a magical storm is gathering pace... Told with choreography, music and bizarre character.

15 to 17 Sep 2013
Devised and performed by Dan Canham, Laura Dannequin, Ian Morgan and Neil Paris.For the past two years Dan Canham has been capturing conversations with people of the fens in East Anglia. Eel-catchers, farmers, parish councillors, museum keepers, molly dancers and conservationists have all been interviewed. This ethereal piece of dance-theatre fuses movement and sound with the words and memories of the native collaborators to get to the heart of this beautiful, bleak and mysterious expanse of flat land.

18 to 20 Sep 2013
by The Wardrobe Ensemble. A tale of violence, greed and cheap sofas. 10 February 2005. At the stroke of midnight the British public punch, kick, strangle and eventually stab their way to £45 sofas and £35 bed frames at the opening of their favourite Swedish furniture store. RIOT is a true story set in a lamp-lit flat-pack universe bursting with violence, chaos and more characters than you can throw a meatball at.

21 Sep 2013
by Myrtle Theatre Company. Matty is off to college in an hour – and he’s left it to Mum to pack his case. She won’t miss the slamming doors, the queue for the bathroom and the phone bills. But Matty is no ordinary teenager and will his mother cope without him? This honest and uplifting play was inspired by the extraordinary life story of a boy with Down’s syndrome and his mother’s humorous perspective on bringing him up.



by Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig, opens 30 Sep 2013, following previews from 25 Sep - closes 26 Oct 2013. Directed by Michael Longhurst. A wildly energetic and imaginative journey through contemporary China. Sunny leaves her family and her home in the Chinese countryside to head to the city and the promise of a job in a factory and a new life. But letting go of the past and embracing a bright new future proves harder than she could have imagined.

by debbie tucker green, opens 5 Nov 2013, following previews from 30 Oct - closes 5 Dec 2013. Cast includes Gershwyn Eustache Jr, Nadine Marshall, Anthony Welsh, Sharlene Whyte. Bein you means not bein me – see, a deficit already – before you even started we running at a loss. Elayne thinks she’s alright. Nobody else does.


Productions Extending ....
Othello extends and closes 5 Oct 2013
Strange Interlude extends and closes 1 Sep 2013
Liola extends and closes 6 Nov 2013
Emil and the Detectives extends to 4 Jan 2014

New Platforms
Unless stated: 6pm / Length 45 mins/ £4

Richard Eyre and Tanya Ronder on Liola
Wed 4 September, Lyttelton
The director and playwright discuss this new version of Pirandello’s play.

Michael Frayn
Mon 9 September, Lyttelton
The playwright, whose work includes Noises Off and Copenhagen, talks to John Miller on the occasion of his 80th birthday.

Complicite at 30 with Simon McBurney and Judith Dimant
Tue 10 September, 5.45pm
The artistic director and producer look back on 30 years of the company’s ground-breaking work, including The Master and Margarita and A Disappearing Number.

Joe Hill-Gibbins on Edward II
Mon 16 September, Olivier
The director talks about his production of Marlowe’s play.

Private Eye – A Cartoon History with Ian Hislop and Nick Newman
Mon 23 September, 5.45pm, Olivier
Editor Ian Hislop and cartoonist and writer Nick Newman discuss a new collection of some of the funniest and most influential examples of the 30,000 Private Eye cartoons published in the last 50 years – from royalty and politics to yobs and giant hedgehogs.

In Context: Liola Fri 11 October
2 – 5pm, John Lyon Education Studio, £15
An in-depth introduction to Pirandello and the world of the play.

Samuel Adamson and Tori Amos on The Light Princess
Fri 18 October, Lyttelton
Tori Amos is joined by playwright Samuel Adamson to reflect on this new musical.

Carl Miller and Bijan Sheibani on Emil and the Detectives
Fri 6 December, 5.30pm, Olivier
The writer and director talk about this new version of Erich Kästner’s story.

A week of events, led by actor Giles Terera, honouring the rich contribution that black artists have made to British theatre over the past 50 years. In the afternoon ‘In Conversation’ events, actors recall their favourite memories that form part of this extraordinary story. In the evening ‘In Discussion’ events, theatre-makers talk about their experiences of the period. On Sunday, the series culminates in a celebration in words and music.

In the Wings... 1960 – 1980
Mon 15 July, Olivier, £4
3pm Mona Hammond and Jeffery Kissoon, chaired by Giles Terera
5.45pm Yvonne Brewster, Oscar James and Mustapha Matura, chaired by Michael Billington

Onto the Stage... 1980 – 2000
Thu 18 July, Olivier, £4
3pm David Harewood and Gary Wilmot
6pm Bonnie Greer, Hugh Quarshie and Paulette Randall

Into the Spotlight... 2000 – 2013
Fri 19 July, Olivier, £4
3pm Nikki Amuka-Bird and Clive Rowe, chaired by Adjoa Andoh
6pm Nicholas Hytner, Kwame Kwei-Armah and Tanya Moodie, chaired by Genista McIntosh

Centre Stage... a Celebration
Sun 21 July, 1pm (90 mins), Lyttelton, £10
Guests include Sharon D Clarke, Lenny Henry, Cush Jumbo, Cyril Nri and Clive Rowe.

50th ANNIVERSARY PLATFORMS..............

Scene Changes
The Shed. Tickets £4 1.05 pm (50 mins)
A series of lunchtime discussions looking at some of the developments and changes in theatre, both off and on stage, over the past 50 years.
1 October Theatre Architecture: new builds and modern refurbs.
2 October Theatre Sound: from noises off to soundscapes.
4 October Theatre Administration: marketing, ticketing, fundraising & access.
7 October Theatre Design: from stage flats to video walls.
8 October Theatre Lighting: illuminating technological developments.
11 October Theatre and Gender: steps towards greater parity.
14 October Theatre Venues: site specific, found spaces & outdoors.
15 October Theatre and Education: from TIE to lifelong learning.
18 October Theatre Criticism: from broadsheet to blog.
21 October Theatre Music: from background music to composition.

National Histories
The Shed, Lyttelton & Olivier Theatres. Tickets £4 6pm (45 mins) on October 1, 2, 4, 7, 8, 11, 14, 15, 16, 18, 21, 22, 24, 25 Ten simple questions, 50 years’ worth of possible answers. We ask key NT figures – actors, writers, directors – the who, what, when, where and why of their recollections of the National. Each event features two guests: check the website to see who’s taking part nearer the time.

Future Questions
Lyttelton Theatre. Tickets £4 (1hr)
Three panel discussions asking questions about the future of theatre.

Writing 30 October 5.45pm Will theatre continue to inspire writers to produce work for the stage in an increasingly digital age? Will the plays now on our stages be performed in 50 years time? What tone will be set by the next generation of writers?

Funding 4 November 5.45pm
Will public funding for the theatre become a thing of the past? Will an increased reliance on philanthropy have an effect on the work?

Regional Theatre 5 November 5.45pm
What is the future for regional theatre in the UK? How will regional theatres have to work to ensure their survival?

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