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Previewed 19 July 2011, Opened 22 July 2011, Closed 3 September 2011 at the Duke of York's Theatre in London
David Grindley's production of R C Sheriff's Journey's End returns to London for a strictly limited season following season's at the Comedy Theatre and Duke of York's Theatre in 2004 and The Ambassadors Theatre in 2005.
Journey's End by R C Sheriff is set during World War I and concerns a group of British soldiers, showing the effects the war has on them - both physically and mentally. When Journey's End was first staged in 1929 it was dubbed the play that swept the world and did so like no other play of its time. Stanhope, a young Captain promoted beyond his years, prepares his men for a daring raid accross No Man's Land and an impending enemy attack. Based on Sherriff's experience in the trenches, this outstanding play, with its humour, courage and fear, is as pertinent now as ever.
This production was originally staged in London's West End on 21 January 2004 - marking the play's 75th Anniversary - at the Comedy Theatre. The production played for a total of 13 months, after which it returned to the West End for a further four months in late 2005. PLEASE NOTE this play is set in the trenches during the First World War and there are many loud explosions and artillery noises during the course of the play.
"The revival of RC Sherriff's great play about life in the trenches during the First World War has been one of the most surprising and gratifying theatrical success stories of recent years... Now recast, yet again, Journey's End is back for a further season, and there isn't a more powerful or moving play in London... Jonathan Fensom's meticulously naturalistic dug-out setting, and Gregory Clarke's thrilling sound design, in which explosions seem to make the theatre physically shake, both deserve special commendation, while Grindley's inspired final tableau arouses emotions that go too deep for words." The Daily Telegraph
"This play, which eloquently celebrates heroism while exposing the waste and idiocies of war, may be 75 years old (and now a set text), but it has lost none of its power to move and provoke. For almost three hours you share a stinking, muddy dugout with soldiers just yards away from the enemy line and just days away from a massive raid. David Grindley's damned fine, frightfully well acted production ensures you'll need more than a tot of rum to keep the tears at bay." The Mail on Sunday
"Magnificent revival of Journey's End... R C Sherriff's First World War play had its West End premiere in 1929, and 75 years on it turns out to have lost none of its power... The play packs in a great deal about the circumstances of the war and the spirit of the men caught up in it. But when it touches on such large topics as comradeship, or courage, or the shortcomings of the top brass, it mostly does so through small confrontations and casual remarks. There is no straining after epic effect. The men are individuals, not representative types - though by the end we do feel that they have acquired a symbolic value, and that this small corner of the war can also stand for the war as a whole." The Sunday Telegraph
"This is a tremendous production of a tremendous play. The terrible, matter-of-fact restraint of the performances gradually grips you, makes you feel tight in the stomach and fills you with anger and pity. R C Sherriff's 1929 play about the first world war has lost none of its force.... David Grindley directs like a master." The Sunday Times
This production was originally seen at the Comedy Theatre (from 21 January to 1 May 2004) prior to transferring to the Playhouse Theatre (from 3 May to 2 October 2004) and then the Duke of York's Theatre (from 5 October 2004 to 19 February 2005). The production then returned seven months later to the Ambassadors Theatre (from 22 September 2005 to 28 January 2006). The original opening night of this revival production was 21 January 2004 which marked the 75th anniversary of the first West End performance of Journey's End at the Savoy Theatre in 1929.
Journey's End in London at the Duke of York's Theatre previewed from 19 July 2011, opened on 22 July 2011 and closed on 3 September 2011.