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Tuesday, 31 January 2012 10:16

The National Theatre's Nicholas Hynter Announces Theatre's Plans for 2012 and Beyond

The National Theatre

Nicholas Hytner announces the National Theatre’s plans for 2012 and beyond

Highlights of the forthcoming productions at the National Theatre, announced today by Nicholas Hytner, include new plays by Alan Bennett, Stephen Beresford, Lisa D’Amour, James Graham and Lucy Prebble. There will be adaptations of Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Simon Stephens, and of The Count of Monte Cristo by Richard Bean. Enda Walsh’s Misterman receives its London premiere; classic revivals include Polly Findlay’s production of Sophocles’ Antigone, Shakespeare’s Timon of Athens directed by Nicholas Hytner, Bijan Sheibani’s staging of Damned for Despair by Tirso de Molina, and Nadia Fall’s production of Bernard Shaw’s The Doctor’s Dilemma.

A number of this summer’s repertoire highlights – The Last of the Haussmans, Timon of Athens and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – as well as a programme of activities for young people and families and new theatre commissions, will be part of the London 2012 Festival, a spectacular 12-week nationwide celebration running from 21 June until 9 September, bringing together leading artists from across the world with the very best from the UK.

Between 2 June and 9 September, the National will stage NATIONAL THEATRE INSIDE OUT, supported by American Express.  Activities normally conducted inside the Theatre will spill out onto the terraces and squares, with a packed festival programme of free activities entering into the spirit of this extraordinary summer.  A specially designed riverfront café bar will invite passers-by into a setting evoking the backstage world, and a pop-up space on the terrace balcony will offer activities and performances for children and families.  In Theatre Square, the annual Watch This Space programme will showcase the best of national and international outdoor performance, with new work from The Gandinis, Circus Space, Square Peg and Upswing; and, in a first for the National, two of its Studio Associate companies, non zero one and Made in China, have been invited to create site-specific work to be performed on and around the building.  

The next three years will offer audiences in the UK and worldwide unprecedented access to the National’s work. Through youth participation, touring, transfer, overseas productions and broadcast, we expect our annual audience to exceed
3 million by 2014. War Horse will embark on a nine-month tour of UK cities in autumn 2013; a second tour of One Man, Two Guvnors will visit England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland in autumn 2012.  Connections will commission 30 new plays for 600 youth theatres nationwide over the next three years.  Forthcoming National Theatre Live broadcasts to 700 screens, which have to date played to 600,000 people worldwide, will include an encore of Frankenstein, The Last of the Haussmans and Timon of Athens. Access to our work on and offstage is also provided through our free digital content; the NT’s iTunes U platform has achieved over one million views and downloads in its first six months.

Olivier Theatre
2012 marks the tenth Travelex Tickets season at the National Theatre; today,  Travelex announce the renewal of their sponsorship for a further three years from 2013 – 2015. This remarkable partnership began in 2003, since when 1.2 million £12 & £10 tickets have been sold; the seasons have played to a total audience of 1.9 milllion people. This year, almost half the tickets for five plays in the Olivier Theatre will again be offered at just £12 (the rest will be £22 and £32).

The first new production for the 2012 Travelex season, opening on 30 May, will be Sophocles’ ANTIGONE, in a version by Don Taylor, directed by Polly Findlay.

The Season will continue in July with TIMON OF ATHENS, directed by Nicholas Hytner as part of the World Shakespeare Festival, with Simon Russell Beale as Timon;  and will culminate in October with Tirso de Molina’s DAMNED FOR DESPAIR, in a version by Frank McGuinness, directed by Bijan Sheibani.

In November, Timothy Sheader will make his NT directorial debut with Richard Bean’s new adaptation of THE COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO,based on the novel by Alexandre Dumas.

Jamie Lloyd’s production of Oliver Goldsmith’s classic English comedy SHE STOOPS TO CONQUER, with a cast including David Fynn, Harry Hadden-Paton, John Heffernan, Cush Jumbo, Katherine Kelly, Steve Pemberton and Sophie Thompson, is now in previews, with a press night on 31 January.

The 2012 Travelex season opens in May with the Olivier transfer of Nicholas Hytner’s production of COLLABORATORS by John Hodge, following its sell-out Cottesloe run;  Alex Jennings and Simon Russell Beale recreate their roles as Bulgakov and Stalin. 

Alecky Blythe and Adam Cork’s LONDON ROAD, winner of the 2011 Critics’ Circle Award for Best New Musical, will be revived by Rufus Norris in the Olivier Theatre for a short season from July.

Looking further ahead to 2013, when the National celebrates its 50th anniversary, Antony Sher (currently appearing in Travelling Light) will return to play the title role of THE CAPTAIN OF KÖPENICK by Carl Zuckmayer, directed by Adrian Noble, opening in the Olivier in January. 

Later that spring, Nicholas Hytner will direct Shakespeare’s OTHELLO, with Adrian Lester in the title role and Rory Kinnear as Iago.

Lyttelton Theatre
MISTERMAN, written and directed by Enda Walsh, will open on 18 April for a limited run; Cillian Murphy will recreate his solo performance in the Landmark Productions/Galway Arts Festival production, greeted with huge press and audience acclaim in New York and Ireland.

In June, Howard Davies directs Julie Walters, Rory Kinnearand Helen McCrory in a new play, THE LAST OF THE HAUSSMANSby Stephen Beresford, sponsored by Accenture.

THE DOCTOR’S DILEMMA by Bernard Shaw will be directed by Nadia Fall, opening in July.

A new play by Alan Bennett, PEOPLE, will open in the Lyttelton in late October, directed by Nicholas Hytner.
In March 2013, Howard Davies will direct Gorky’s CHILDREN OF THE SUN.

As previously announced, DV8’s CAN WE TALK ABOUT THIS? joins the repertoire in March 2012 for 22 performances, while the recently opened TRAVELLING LIGHT is on tour.

Cottesloe Theatre
MOON ON A RAINBOW SHAWL by Errol John opens on 14 March, directed by Michael Buffong;  the cast includes Jude Akuwudike, Jade Anouka, Jenny Julesand Danny Sapani.

Inua Ellams returns to the Cottesloe in April with his new show, BLACK T-SHIRT COLLECTION, presented by Fuel.

DETROIT by Lisa D’Amour has its UK premiere in May, directed by Austin Pendleton (who directed the original production by Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre Company last year) with a new London cast.

In July, Marianne Elliott directs THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME, based on the novel by Mark Haddon, adapted by Simon Stephens; the cast includes Una Stubbs, Luke Treadaway and Nicola Walker. The production is supported by the National Theatre’s Cottesloe Partner, Neptune Investment Management.

A new play by James Graham, THIS HOUSE, will be directed by Jeremy Herrin, opening in September.

Rupert Goold will direct a new play by Lucy Prebble, in a co-production with Headlong, in November.

Katie Mitchell will stage HANSEL AND GRETEL for 4 to 7 year-olds in December, sponsored by Neptune Investment Management.

National Theatre throughout the UK, in the West End, on Broadway and internationally

Nicholas Hytner’s production of TRAVELLING LIGHT by Nicholas Wright will tour from March with the NT cast, led by Antony Sher, to Salford, Leeds, Aylesbury and Newcastle.

Following two record-breaking runs at the National and the Adelphi Theatre, Richard Bean’s award-winning ONE MAN, TWO GUVNORScontinues its London run at the Theatre Royal Haymarket from 2 March, with Owain Arthur as Francis Henshall. Alongside it, a second UK tour will visit Leicester, Newcastle, Glasgow, Belfast, Blackpool, Norwich, Leeds, Llandudno and Salford in autumn 2012, followed by an international tour.  Nicholas Hytner’s production, with the original principals led by James Corden, Oliver Chris and Jemima Rooper, opens at Broadway’s Music Box Theatre on 18 April. 

Alongside its sell-out run at the New London Theatre, where booking will shortly be extended until October 2013, WAR HORSE will embark on a nine-month UK tour from September 2013, starting in Plymouth. In New York, its run continues at Lincoln Center Theater; a national tour of the US in June 2012 will bring the play to another 20 US cities during the 2012-2013 season. The production opens at Toronto’s Princess of Wales Theatre in February, and in Melbourne at the Arts Centre’s State Theatre in December 2012.

The 2012 CONNECTIONS FESTIVALof specially commissioned plays for young people, supported by Accenture and Bank of America Merrill Lynch, will feature new work exploring stories from around the world by British and international writers, including a new rock musical, Alice by Heart, by Steven Sater and Duncan Sheik. 180 young theatre companies will mount productions in their home venues and at 20 youth theatre festivals with partner theatres across the UK and Ireland; one example of each play will be performed in the Cottesloe and Olivier Theatres in June.  Growing our work with schools and teachers across the UK includes the launch this year of New Views, a national playwriting programme for 15 to19 year-olds, offering an online writing course with contributions from playwrights including David Hare, Richard Bean, Katori Hall and Roy Williams;  one play will be selected for performance in Parliament’s Westminster Hall.

The third season of live cinema broadcasts from the National’s stages, National Theatre Live, is now reaching over 130 UK cinemas and 600 more abroad,  sponsored by Aviva. Future screenings will include TRAVELLING LIGHT on 9 February 2012; THE COMEDY OF ERRORS on 1 March; and SHE STOOPS TO CONQUER on 29 March;  encore screenings of FRANKENSTEIN this spring;  and, in the autumn, TIMON OF ATHENS and THE LAST OF THE HAUSSMANS.

The National Theatre is supported by Arts Council England.


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