Opening: Shape of Things, History, Rider & RomeoDate: 17 May 2004
Amongst the major shows opening in London this week are:
OPENING TONIGHT, Monday 17 May 2004 (previews from 6 May), Julian Webber’s new production of Neil LaBute’s 2001 Almeida hit The Shape of Things transfers to the West End’s New Ambassadors Theatre, following initial dates in Plymouth and Brighton (See News, 11 Mar 2004). Britons Enzo Cilenti, Sienna Guillory, James Murray and Hollywood’s Alicia Witt star as four American college students students engaged in an intense experiment in modern love and art, where nothing is quite what it seems.
OPENING TUESDAY, 18 May 2004 (previews from 8 May), Alan Bennett’s new play about staffroom rivalry and the best way to teach sixth form history lessons, The History Boys, receives its world premiere at the National’s Lyttelton Theatre, where it runs in repertoire, currently booking up to 24 June (See News, 6 May 2004). Frances de la Tour, Stephen Campbell Moore, Dominic Cooper and Richard Griffiths feature in the production, directed by NT artistic director Nicholas Hytner and designed by Bob Crowley.
ALSO ON TUESDAY, 18 May 2004 (previews from 14 May), James Macdonald directs Leo Butler’s Lucky Dog at the Royal Court Jerwood Theatre Upstairs, where it continues until 12 June (See News, 16 Mar 2004). Eddie and Sue are settling down to their Christmas dinner, but the dog refuses to eat her giblets and the phone keeps ringing.
OPENING WEDNESDAY, 19 May 2004 (previews from 7 May), is Romeo and Juliet at Shakespeare’s Globe (See News, 27 Apr 2004). Tim Carroll’s mixed-gender production, starring Tom Burke and Kananu Kirimi in the title roles, launches the open-air theatre’s 2004 “Season of Star-Crossed Lovers”. It continues until 26 September and is joined later in repertoire by Much Ado About Nothing and Measure for Measure.
OPENING FRIDAY, 21 May 2004 (previews from 17 May), Sixties icon Marianne Faithfull takes to the theatrical stage for the first time in more than three decades to star in The Black Rider at the Barbican Theatre (See News, 3 Mar 2004). The first English-language staging of the 1991 German piece about a clerk who makes a Faustian pact with Faithfull’s devilish Pegleg, and the first production produced solely by the City-based arts complex as part of its ongoing BITE (Barbican International Theatre Events) season, is a collaboration between renowned director Robert Wilson, who has also designed and lit the production, with composer Tom Waits and Beat writer William Burroughs. Its limited season continues until 12 June.
- by Terri Paddock