Sean Holmes will direct the first major London revival for 25 years of Edward Bond's seminal play Saved as part of his third season as artistic director of west London’s Lyric Hammersmith.
The production, the first professional UK production Bond has allowed of his explosive play in 25 years, follows the Lyric's Olivier Award-winning revival of Sarah Kane's equally controversial, Bond-inspired work, Blasted, at the Hammersmith playhouse last year. Bond will also work with the theatre to present three of his one-act plays in the Lyric Studio.
A regular at the Royal Court in the 1960s and 70s, Bond has been enjoying something of a resurgence in London’s Theatreland since 2008 when Jonathan Kent presented the overdue West End premiere of Bond’s 1973 play The Sea as part of the Theatre Royal Haymarket’s inaugural in-house season. In the new year, Patrick Stewart will reprise his 2010 Chichester performance in Bond’s Bingo at the Young Vic.
Other highlights in Holmes’ new 2011/2012 Lyric season, announced today, will include Kneehigh Theatre’s latest project The Wild Bride, making its London debut before embarking on a national tour, Christmas pantomime Aladdin continuing the venue's commitment to a festival family show, Frantic Assembly returning to the Lyric with Lovesong, a new play written in collaboration with Abi Morgan, and Holmes reuniting with Filter to present their version of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night's Dream.
The full seasons main house schedule is as follows:
The Wild Bride, 12–24 September 2011 (previews from 7 September) following its West End outing with The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, Emma Rice's Cornwall-based company Kneehigh presents a "lyrical tale with a brutal edge and a beating heart" with a story about what happens when your father accidentally sells you to the devil. The heroine walks off into the wilderness, meets a prince and becomes pregnant. Charting the journey from girlhood to womanhood, the production is billed as a grown-up romance for brave children and adults alike.
Saved, 13 October–5 November 2011 (previews from 6 October) Bond's controversial play set in working-class south London shocked audiences and critics alike with its 1965 London debut. Originally banned, due to its infamous 'stoning of a baby' scene, Bond's work proved instrumental in the abolition of stage censorship and inspired a generation of playwrights, including the late Sarah Kane.
Aladdin, 2–31 December 2011 (previews from 19 November) The Lyric presents its third family pantomime, with the newly appointed artistic director of the Soho Theatre Steve Marmion reuniting with writers Joel Horwood and Morgan Lloyd Malcolm. Aladdin follows the successes of the team's Dick Whittington and His Cat and Jack and the Beanstalk over the two previous Christmas seasons.
Lovesong, 12–28 January 2012 (previews from 11 January) Frantic Assembly returns to the Lyric Hammersmith following its award-winning production of Othello, to present Lovesong - a third collaboration with writer Abi Morgan. Morgan, who previously worked with Frantic Assembly on Tiny Dynamite, wrote the forthcoming Meryl Streep film Iron Lady and BBC drama series The Hour. Lovesong intertwines a couple in their twenties with the same man and woman a lifetime later. Their past and present selves collide in what is billed as a "haunting and beautiful tale of togetherness".
A Midsummer Night's Dream, 13 February-17 March 2012 (previews from 9 February) Ferdy Roberts and Ollie Dimsdale's Filter return to the Lyric Hammersmith to "remix, rework and revitalise" Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night's Dream. Previous soundscape-heavy collaborations have included Twelfth Night for the Royal Shakespeare Company and the Tricycle, Three Sisters at the Lyric Hammersmith and their version of Brecht’s The Caucasian Chalk Circle for the National Theatre.
In the Lyric Studio Edward Bond’s three shorts Chair, The Under Room and Have I None will be performed alongside a series of events in April 2012 - with full performance dates still to be announced. Bond himself will direct Chair, originally broadcast as a radio play on BBC Radio 4 in 2000 whilst The Under Room and Have I None will be presented in rep. Lyric artistic director Sean Holmes will helm Have I None with Bond also directing The Under Room.