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Five reasons to see Downstate at the National Theatre

Here are five reasons to see Downstate at the National Theatre which must end on 27 April


© Michael Brosilow

Bruce Norris's challenging new play has opened at the National Theatre to critical acclaim. A provocative piece that focuses on the limits of compassion, and what happens when society deems anyone beyond forgiveness, we find out five reasons that Downstate should not be missed.


1. It received a five-star review from WhatsOnStage

In Sarah Crompton's five-star review, she said that Downstate is ‘profound, vital and extraordinarily brave' and that the ‘entire ensemble is magnificent'.



© Michael Brosilow


2. It's a new show from Steppenwolf

Downstate is a co-production with one of America's most prestigious theatre companies, the multi award-winning Steppenwolf. It's a unique opportunity to see their incredible work here in the UK.


3. Written by Bruce Norris and directed by Pam MacKinnon

Downstate is written by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Bruce Norris (Clybourne Park) and directed by the brilliant Pam MacKinnon – watch the National's interview with Pam as she tells you what to expect from her production.



4. The incredible cast

The cast includes members of Steppenwolf's ensemble from the US, plus some faces from closer to home that you may recognise, including the Olivier Award-nominated Cecilia Noble (Nine Night) and up-and-coming Netflix star Aimee Lou Wood (Sex Education).



5. The Dorfman powerhouse

Downstate plays in the National Theatre's Dorfman theatre, the smallest space of the three at the NT. It's become a hot-bed for new writing and has been the place to see recent five-star productions like Nine Night, Home, I'm Darling and Beginning before they've hit the West End.


It's not just the critics who applaud it – see what the audience are saying:



Content Advisory: Please note: Downstate discusses and contains graphic descriptions of child abuse and rape. There are also graphic depictions of self-harm and reference to drug use, that some people may find distressing. If you require further information, contact details are provided in the National Theatre's online Help centre.


Do not miss Downstate at the National Theatre – must end 27 April.

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