OPENING TONIGHT, Monday 21 February 2005, (previews 17 February), at the West End’s Arts Theatre, the Royal Shakespeare Company continues its multi-pronged assault on London with the Stratford transfer of Tynan (See News, 11 Jan 2005). Fresh from playing King Lear for the RSC at the Albery, Corin Redgrave takes another title role, playing the late drama critic Kenneth Tynan in this new one-man show. Based on The Diaries of Kenneth Tynan, the material has been adapted for the stage by Richard Nelson (with Colin Chambers), who also directs. The limited six-week season continues until 26 March.
OPENING TUESDAY, 22 February 2005, (previews 17 February), the Donmar Warehouse premieres multi award-winning Irish playwright Owen McCafferty’s new stage adaptation of JP Miller’s Days of Wine and Roses (See News, 10 Jan 2005). In the two-hander, Anne-Marie Duff (The Daughter in Law, Collected Stories, TV’s Shameless) and Peter McDonald (A Lie of the Mind, The Lieutenant of Inishmore) play Mona and Donal who leave Belfast for a new start in Swinging Sixties’ London, where they fall in love with life, each other and the drink.
Miller's portrait of a couple's alcohol addiction was made into the 1962 film, starring Jack Lemmon and Lee Remick. The production is directed by Peter Gill, who also directed McCafferty’s Scenes from the Big Picture at the National in 2003. Its limited season continues until 2 April 2005.
OPENING WEDNESDAY, 23 February 2005, Simon Mendes da Costa’s Losing Louis transfers direct to the West End’s Trafalgar Studios following its limited season at north London’s Hampstead Theatre, where it premiered last month (See News, 4 Feb 2005). The entire original cast – featuring Alison Steadman, David Horovitch, Jason Durr, Brian Protheroe, Lynda Bellingham, Anita Briem and Emma Cunniffe – continue in the production directed by Robin Lefevre. At the new venue, it’s initially booking until 25 June 2005.
OPENING THURSDAY, 24 February 2005, (previews 18 February), the Young Vic revives its acclaimed 2001 production of American playwright Lorraine Hansberry’s 1959 play about a poor black family in Chicago, A Raisin in the Sun (pictured), at west London’s Lyric Hammersmith. Directed by Young Vic artistic director David Lan and staged as part of the South Bank theatre’s ‘Walkabout’ season while its Waterloo base is completely rebuilt (See News, 7 Jul 2004), the production runs in Hammersmith until 26 March 2005 and will then tour to Liverpool, Salford and Oxford before returning to east London’s Hackney Empire. Original cast members Lennie James and American Novella Nelson reprise their roles.
- by Terri Paddock