Play by Harold Pinter. It's Christmas Day in a nameless state-run mental institution where the inmates are subjected to a tirade of mindless cruelty. A maniacal and self-obsessed leader breeds a contagion of hierarchical savagery amongst his staff, who thrive on a noxious diet of delusion and deceit. "The day got off to a lousy start! A death and a birth. Absolutely bloody scandalous! Is it too much to ask - to keep the place clean?"
At once chilling and deliriously funny, Harold Pinter's The Hothouse was written in 1958 just before The Caretaker but continues to be as vital and pertinent today as when it was written in the 50s.
1980: West End Premiere at Ambassadors Theatre
Previewed 24 April 1980, Opened 1 May 1980, Closed 14 June 1980 at the Hampstead Theatre
Previewed 24 June 1980, Opened 25 June 1980, Closed 20 September 1980 at the Ambassadors Theatre
The cast at London's Hampstead Theatre and the West End's Ambassadors Theatre featured Derek Newark as 'Roote', James Grant as 'Gibbs', Roger Davidson as 'Lamb', Angela Pleasence as 'Miss Cutts', Robert East as 'Lush', Michael Forrest as 'Tubb', and Edward de Souza as 'Lobb'.
Directed by Harold Pinter, with sets by Eileen Diss, costumes by Elizabeth Walker, lighting by Gerry Jenkinson, and sound by Dominic Muldowney.
1995: 1st West End London Revival at the Comedy Theatre
Opened 3 October 1995 (no previews), Closed 2 December 1995 at the Comedy Theatre (now Harold Pinter Theatre)
The cast featured Harold Pinter as 'Roote', John Shrapnel as 'Gibbs', Christien Anholt as 'Lamb', Celia Imrie as 'Miss Cutts', Tony Haygarth as 'Lush', Roland Oliver as 'Tubb', and Peter Blythe as 'Lobb'.
Directed by David Jones, with sets by Eileen Diss, costumes by Tom Rand, lighting by Mick Hughes, and sound by Tom Lishman.
A transfer from the Chichester Minerva Theatre - previewed from 17 August 1995, opened on 22 August 1995, and closed 9 September 1995 (in repertory) - with the same cast.
2007: London Revival at the National Theatre
Previewed 11 July 2007, Opened 18 July 2007, Closed 27 October 2007 (in repertory) at the National Theatre's Lyttelton Theatre
The cast featured Stephen Moore as 'Roote', Finbar Lynch as 'Gibbs', Leo Bill as 'Lamb', Lia Williams as 'Miss Cutts', Paul Ritter as 'Lush', Henry Woolf as 'Tubb', and Peter Pacey as 'Lobb'.
Directed by Ian Rickson, with designs by Hildegard Bechtler, lighting by Peter Mumford, music by Stephen Warbeck, and sound by Ian Dickinson.
2013: 2nd West End London Revival at the Trafalgar Studios
Previewed 4 May 2013, Opened 9 May 2013, Closed 3 August 2013 at the Trafalgar Studios 1 (now Trafalgar Theatre)
A major revival of Harold Pinter's play The Hothouse starring Simon Russell Beale and John Simm
The cast featured Simon Russell Beale as 'Roote', John Simm as 'Gibbs', Harry Melling as 'Lamb', Indira Varma as 'Miss Cutts', John Heffernan as 'Lush', Clive Rowe as 'Tubb', and Christopher Timothy as 'Lobb'.
Directed by Jamie Lloyd, with designs by Soutra Gilmour, lighting by Neil Austin, and music and sound by Ben and Max Ringham.
Simon Russell Beale's recent West End acting credits include Michael Grandage's revival of Peter Nichols' comedy Privates on Parade (Noel Coward Theatre 2012); Matthew Warchus revival of Ira Levin's comedy thriller Deathtrap (Noel Coward Theatre 2010); David Leveaux revival of Tom Stoppard's play Jumpers (National Theatre and Piccadilly Theatre 2003); and John Caird's production of Charlotte Jones' play Humble Boy (National Theatre 2001 and Gielgud Theatre 2002).
John Simm's recent London theatre acting credits include Toby Frow's production of Andrew Bovell's play Speaking in Tongues (Duke of York's Theatre 2009) and Paul Miller's production of Ingvar Ambjørnsen's Elling, adapted for the stage by Axel Hellstenius in collaboration with Petter Næss (Trafalgar Studios 2007).
Clive Rowe's London stage credits include Caroline, or Change (National Theatre 2006).
The Hothouse in London at the Trafalgar Studios 1 previewed from 4 May 2013, opened on 9 May 2013 and closed on 3 August 2013.