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1st Night Photos: Herds Attend Rhinoceros Opening

By • West End
Eugene Ionesco’s early Absurdist play Rhinoceros received its first major UK revival last night (27 September 2007, previews from 21 September) at the Royal Court, where it continues until 15 December (See Also Today’s Review Round-up). From 6 November (previews from 1 November), it will run in repertory with a revival of Max Frisch’s The Arsonists, performed by the same company.

That company is led by Benedict Cumberbatch who, in Ionesco’s satire on conformity, plays Berenger, a man whose entire world is threatened when herds of rhinoceroses start thundering through town. He’s joined by Jasper Britton, Zawe Ashton, Michael Begley, Paul Chahidi, Jacqueline Defferary, David Hinton, Lloyd Hutchinson, Claire Prempeh, Alwyne Taylor and Graham Turner.

TO SCROLL THROUGH ALL OF THE RHINOCEROS 1st NIGHT PHOTOS,
JUST CLICK ON THE "NEXT >" LINKS BELOW THE FOLLOWING FRAME.

In the Jerwood Theatre Downtairs, the plays by Romanian-born Frenchman Ionesco and the Swiss Frisch form the cornerstone of the Royal Court’s internationally themed autumn season. The International Playwrights Season runs concurrently in the smaller Jerwood Theatre Upstairs with five new plays by writers from Germany, Romania, India, Sweden and Ukraine.

Rhinoceros had its Royal Court premiere in a 1960 production directed by Orson Welles and starring Laurence Olivier and Joan Plowright. This new translation by Martin Crimp is directed by artistic director Dominic Cooke and designed by Anthony Ward, with lighting by Johanna Town, sound by Ian Dickinson and music by Gary Yershon.

For 1st Night Photos, our Whatsonstage.com photographer Dan Wooller was on hand for the Rhinoceros post-show party at Royal Court along with the company and other first night guests including Susan Wooldridge, Lucy Bailey, Nina Raine, Moses Raine, Lia Williams, Helen Schlesinger, Thomas Wheatley and, currently appearing in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs in German playwright Marius von Mayenburg’s The Ugly One, Frank McCusker and Amanda Drew.

- by Terri Paddock


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