London Theatre News - July 2017

Girl From the North Country: "An instant American classic"

Conor McPherson's World Premiere production of his own play Girl From the North Country, featuring classic songs by Bob Dylan, opened at London's Old Vic Theatre on Wednesday 26 July 2017.
1934. Duluth, Minnesota in the midst of the Great Depression. A family adrift, their future on a knife edge. Lost and lonely people drifting through rooms of their guesthouse. But Nick Laine thinks he's seen a way out...
When this production opened Michael Billington in the Guardian praised how "the constant dialogue between the drama and the songs that makes this show exceptional," adding that "as director, Conor McPherson has created an astonishingly free-flowing production and the 19-strong cast, which includes three musicians, is so uniformly strong it is tough to pick out individuals." In the Times, Ann Treneman highlighted how "the result is an instant American classic: a tale of heartbreak and hardscrabble, poetic but not without fun," explaining that "it is genius the way that McPherson has tapped into the American folk era of Woody Guthrie and hobos, something that inspired Dylan in his early freewheeling days."
Girl From the North Country continues to play at the Old Vic Theatre up to Saturday 7 October 2017.

Jeremy Irons in Long Day's Journey Into Night opens 6 February 2018

It has been announced that Richard Eyre's revival of Eugene O'Neill's play Long Day's Journey into Night starring Jeremy Irons and Lesley Manville - previously seen in March 2016 at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre - will transfer London's Wyndham's Theatre on Tuesday 6 February 2018, following public previews from Saturday 27 January.
"The past is the present, isn't it? It's the future, too." Set in August 1912, Eugene O'Neill's masterpiece unfolds over one long summer's day in the life of the troubled Tyrone family - James and Mary Tyrone and their sons, Jamie and Edmund. An extraordinary psychological epic, centring around the Mother's painful decline into morphine addiction, with all four family members battle their demons, their pasts, and one another in four extraordinary personal struggles as the family disintegrates into physical and spiritual ruin. Hailed as one of the finest plays in the history of American theatre.
Long Day's Journey Into Night will play for a limited three month season up to Saturday 7 April 2018.

Rhys Ifans in A Christmas Carol opens 29 November 2017

Jack Thorne's new stage adapation of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol starring Rhys Ifans will open at London's Old Vic Theatre on Wednesday 29 November 2017, following public previews from Saturday 18 November.
On a bitter Christmas Eve night a cold-hearted miser is visited by four ghosts. Transported to worlds past, present and future, Ebenezer Scrooge witnesses what a lifetime of fear and selfishness has led to and sees with fresh eyes the lonely life he has built for himself. Can Ebenezer be saved before it's too late?
Directed by Matthew Warchus, this new production features Rhys Ifans as 'Ebenezer Scrooge' and promises to be an uplifting family show suitable for ages 11 and above.
A Christmas Carol will play for a limited nine week holiday season up to Saturday 20 January 2018.

Derren Brown's 'greatest hits' show Undergound opens 11 September 2017

It has been announced that the illusionist and mentalist Derren Brown will bring his 'greatest hits' stage show Underground to London's Playhouse Theatre for a five week season from Monday 11 September 2017.
Featuring the 'best bits' from Derren Brown's previous West End stage shows from the last 14 years, this live stage show once again promises to be a spell-binding experience of magical genius and epic showmanship. Devised and performed by Derren Brown and directed by Andrew O'Connor and Andy Nyman.
Derren Brown's Undergound will run at the Playhouse Theatre up to Saturday 14 October 2017.

James Graham's "super, soaraway smash" Ink to transfer to West End 19 September 2017

It has been confirmed that, following an acclaimed sold-old season at the Almeida Theatre in North London, Rupert Goold's production of James Graham's new play Ink will transfer to the West End's Duke of York's Theatre on Tuesday 19 September 2017, following public previews from Saturday 9 September.
Fleet Street. 1969. The Sun rises. A young and rebellious Rupert Murdoch asks the impossible and launches The Sunís first editorís quest: to give the people what they want. No matter the cost. The story behind the birth of Britain's most popular, controversial and influential newspaper.
The cast for the West End transfer will feature Bertie Carvel as 'Rupert Murdoch' and Richard Coyle as 'Larry Lamb', the first editor of the Sun newspaper. When this production was seen at the Almeida Theatre in June 2017, Dominic Cavendish in the Daily Telegraph praised how "James Graham has surely penned a super, soaraway smash" while Michael Billington in the Guardian hailed it as being "a good and gripping piece of theatre... a first-rate play about newspapers."
Ink will play a limited four month season at the Duke of York's Theatre up to Saturday 6 January 2018.

Alan Ayckbourn's 'dystopian future' play The Divide opens 3 February 2018

It has been confirmed that Annabel Bolton's West End Premiere of Alan Ayckbourn's new play The Divide will open at the Old Vic Theatre on Saturday 3 February 2018, following public previews from Tuesday 30 January - and will play for a very strictly limited run of just seven two-part performances. Alan Ayckbourn's play is set a century from now, in the aftermath of a deadly contagion which has decimated the English population and rendered contact between men and women fatal. Under the dictates of an elusive Preacher, an unthinkable solution is enforced. A vision of a dystopian future defined by brutal repression and forbidden love. The cast features Erin Doherty and Jake Davies with Clare Burt, Sian Thomas and Finty Williams. Prior to the West End this production will be presented at Edinburgh's King's Theatre as part of the 2017 Edinburgh International Festival. The Divide will play at London's Old Vic Theatre up to Saturday 10 February 2018.