Stars align for Grandage Company's inaugural West End season
Date: 15 June 2012
Michael Grandage is launching his new production company in grand style later this year with a residency of five productions at the Noel Coward theatre, starring a who’s who of the contemporary British stage.
Each production will be directed by Grandage and run for 12 weeks, with 200 tickets to every performance being available for just £10.
The season will open on 10 December 2012 (previews from 1 December) with a revival of Peter Nichols' 1977 farce Privates on Parade, starring Simon Russell Beale.
Russell Beale plays the cross-dressing Captain Dennis whose performances of Marlene Dietrich, Vera Lynn and Carmen Miranda form the centrepiece of Nichols‘ award-winning comedy set against the murderous backdrop of the Malaysian campaign at the end of the Second World War.
It’s followed, from 25 March 2013 (previews from 9 March) by a new play by John Logan, whose previous credits include Red, a huge hit for Grandage during his tenure as artistic director of the Donmar Warehouse. Titled Peter and Alice it examines the real-life stories behind Alice In Wonderland and Peter Pan and stars Judi Dench as Alice Liddell Hargreaves and Ben Whishaw as Peter Llewelyn Davies - the respective inspirations for the iconic children’s books.
Next up (from 18 June 2013, previews from 8 June) is a new production of Martin McDonagh’s The Cripple Of Inishmaan starring Daniel Radcliffe - who won a Whatsonstage.com Best Newcomer Award for his West End debut in Equus in 2007 and has since appeared on Broadway in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.
Then comes an all-star production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, featuring Sheridan Smith as Titania and David Walliams as Bottom. Opening on 17 September 2013 (previews from 7 September), Grandage told the Daily Mail’s Baz Bamigboye it will be an “absolutely sexual production”.
And rounding off the residency is Henry V starring Jude Law - who played Hamlet for Grandage during the Donmar West End season at Wyndham’s Theatre - running from 3 December 2013 (previews from 23 November) to 15 February 2014.
Grandage and executive producer James Bierman said of their stunningly ambitious first season: "We are delighted to announce the inaugural season of work for the Michael Grandage Company – a programme comprised of new writing alongside the classical and twentieth century repertoire.
"At its heart is a commitment to reach out to as wide an audience as possible with over 200 tickets for each performance at £10 - over 100,000 across the season and through our schools’ and access work we aim to appeal to new theatregoers and help build audiences for the future."
Oh dear Sideline! Bravo for your incredible display of verbage, but sadly you have distorted the whole world around you. No, I know nothing of you, but you have made outrageous assumptions about me and others that may post here - although I am not quite sure why you bother to come, such is your disdain for 'us', apart from your need to be noticed - I suspect you are a failed writer/critic maybe?!
Let me enlighten you - I very rarely attend musical theatre or the usual mainstream work. For almost 20 years I have worked myself in issue-based theatre, challenging perceptions surrounding themes such as racism, sexuality, domestic violence, abuse, anti-social behaviour, gangs and violent crime. I prefer theatre that is different, cutting edge, innovative and even shocking and regularly am involved in the production of these as well as being in the audience of incredible experential theatre around the country. You have no idea about me, or anyone else on here, and yet you lump everyone together in one amorphous and blinkered 'luvvie' group of your very limited imagination.
I am also very glad to have an appreciation and deep fondness for Shakespeare and other classical text and enjoy nothing more than to watch it brought to life in a beautifully simple, yet forward thinking translation, such as Grandage and his team have created so many times. Yes, the 'stars' help put bums on seats, but in my humble opinion they are hugely talented and the likes of Jacobi, Sheen along with this season of Law, Whishaw etc are a superb choice by Grandage, and I relish the opportunity to see them.
Off you pop then to battle your demons somewhere else. You're no more than a wannabe diva! - Angel
21 Jun 12
Addison, he probably is and has never been cast by Grandage, it all smacks of the personal. As a modestly paid charity work (accounts, not PR) I am really looking forward to this season. How someone can criticise Judi Dench for supporting new work is beyond me, she's done it all her illustrious career and deserves praise not snide remarks for doing so. I plan to try to get £10 seats for everything. Thank you MG. - KJ
18 Jun 12
Ha ha! you really should be on the stage yourself. - Addison
18 Jun 12
Sieg Heil! - Falen
18 Jun 12
@"falen'angel - How wrong you are. I suspect, however, that you and sideline might be the same person. At least your spelling indicates that you might be. "Falen", "commidified", "except" instead of "expect" or "accept", "were" instead of "where". The list goes on.
I am not in PR. I did not vote for a dancing dog. I do vote in elections. But what does that have to do with Mr Grandage's talent. He consistently delivers top quality theatre and the star casting is the icing on the cake.
You and sideline are just the sort of trolls that the government is keen to expose and eradicate.
I see from the dictionary that "falen" is Dutch for "failure". 'Nuff said! - Addison
18 Jun 12
Dear sideline, don't waste your breath, there are professional PR voices at work here.They are paid to support the cause. - Falen Angel
18 Jun 12
Time for your tablets, sideline! - Addison
17 Jun 12
Angel, please, thank you... it's heartening that you even care but please please you have misunderstood me. I am not a whinger, that missive I posted was not a whinge but a throat curdling, vein popping eyeball busting howl of utter rage and despair... you don't know me, and possibly would cross over to the other side of the rather cosy side of the street that you favour, that all these homogenized dweebs that pst on this site crowd so blindly... come on, its okay,.. I know you... I know you all... I know what you like. i know what you wear, i know what you drink, it's wrong. You are confused and deluded. you pay good money to see a musical that sells short the work of one of the great british rock bands, okay the surviving members of Queen waited until their incredible frontman died before they cynically repackaged and commidified his life work for American's a cosy 8 times a week obliterating and ignoring the truth that the pain and the hurt and the passion and the truth it took to create that fantastic music took the artist that created it to a painful untimely death. You vote in droves for a dancing dog to represent the true talent of Britain whilst you ennui prevents you voting in a governmental election slamming this country into a doubie dip depression and making us a laughing stock throughout the world were teenagers die in the East for the right to vote for freedom. i know you... all of you..you want art but you don't want to work for it or think about it or decide, Jude Law is enough, Judy because she is the queen mother of theater, Walliams is funny and off the telly, and all for ten pounds, only ten pounds, ten pounds, you think its fun and exciting but you are ruled by fear...this isn't benevolence but fear people, cowards all of you... cowards... but I can help you.. i can replace this pity this misplaced benevolence ... you are capable of more... together we can reach higher and attain true art . BELIEVE IN OURSELVES TOGETHER WE COULD BE GREAT... Honestly ... except better please... please - sideline
16 Jun 12
Where would the theatre world be today without the sheer, unwavering brilliance of Michael Grandage? From Frost Nixon to Billy Budd to musicals, the classics and Shakespeare revealed in all its true glory, he makes the theatre exciting, clever yet accessible, a star-studded, mind-provoking thrilling event that attracts standing ovations from his appreciative audiences. For me every production is a delight. Nothing else quite like it. And now this new production companyof his is offering a menu of more potentially thrilling stuff from wonderful performers and with many tickets at an affordable tenner. Accuse me of hyperbole, but if you have walked out of as many productions as me in recent years (maybe you have!) often at the interval, feeling let down and disappointed, Michael Grandage has never let me down and I don't suppose he ever will. - La Bloggeuse
16 Jun 12
Looks like a fantastic series of productions here - though I wasn't intending on making my first 2014 purchase with over 18 months to go! Good on Grandage, this is just what the West End needs to spark interest with new audiences. - Daniel Whitley
15 Jun 12
Great news that Mr Grandage has created a season in the West End. It's an inspired ticket policy idea - the range of prices makes theatre accessible and what an amazing range of talent. - Fiona
15 Jun 12
What a wonderful season and what terrific stars. Dench, Law, Radcliffe, Walliams, Smith, Russell Beale, Whishaw. Well done Michael Grandage. You are just what the West End needs. This will be top quality theatre along the lines of your marvellous work at the Donmar. Ignore the bitter whingers and watch the queues form round the block. You are a genius.
15 Jun 12
Oh hold on, three whingers! That's fine by us - great to know those £10 tickets won't be wasted on you - delighted you won't be snobbing up the audience for these, but rather something altogether more worthy! - Angel
15 Jun 12
Get a life you two whingers! We can't wait - sounds fantastic and Grandage is a God! - Angel
15 Jun 12
Hegemony, brilliant! I had to look it up and couldn't agree more. Shame on the so called stars, another ott camp fest from SRB (Denis Quilley couldn't be bettered), and Judi with an unknown quantity again, do the words Madame DeSade mean nothing to her? A musical comedy turn, a film star or two and a non acting comedian. I despair! Thank God for the sterling work going on in the real power houses of Southwark Playhouse, Finborough etc.etc. - coral
15 Jun 12
Why does my heart sink...Grandage Hegemony sinks to a shamelss level of crass vulgarity. A 'star studded' rehash of his previous work. Nothing but a cynical regressive blatant display of ego and disgusting ambition. I feel as if I've been sneezed on by a dinosaur. - sideline
15 Jun 12
How much more Shakespeare do we really need? This is simply ridiculous. - joesmith
Whatsonstage.com - Discount London theatre tickets, theatre news and reviews, Theatre videos, Theatre discussion, National Theatre Listings. Covering London's West End, all of Theatreland and all UK theatre. The best
for London Theatre Ticket Discounts.