Husband Sets New Record with Lyric TransferDate: 26 October 1998
The show that would not die, Sir Peter Hall's production of Oscar Wilde's An Ideal Husband, has been given a new lease of life once again. The play, which finished a run (its third) at the Theatre Royal Haymarket on 10 October in order to make way for the Royal National Theatre production of Tom Stoppard's The Invention of Love, continues its non-stop run by moving to its sixth West End theatre, the Lyric, on 3 November. It will be booking until 27 February 1999.
Such an extensive peripatetic life has been accomplished only once before when the 1965 production of the same play ran at a record six West End venues. One of the original 1965 cast members, Richard Todd, joins the 1998 cast - including Christopher Cazenove, Susannah York, Oliver Cotton, Geraldine Fitzgerald and Barbara Murray - in its new home.
Since its inception in 1992, An Ideal Husband has been performed more than 2,500 times at a string of venues. During its marathon life, it has run for seven months at the Gielgud Theatre, for three months at the Haymarket in 1996, nine months at the Old Vic and a season on Broadway as well as a national tour of Australia. It returned to the West End in August 1997 for two months back at the Haymarket before transferring back to the Gielgud for another five months, followed by the Albery for six months and the Haymarket, yet again, for another month and a half.
In Oscar Wilde's 1895 satire, a woman attempts to ruin a politician's successful career by producing incriminating evidence about his past. However, she hasn't reckoned on the faithfulness and good memory of his devoted wife.