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What to watch: best shows to see this week

We round up the top shows to see this week

Clockwise from left: Pericles, The Prisoner and The Rise and Fall of Little Voice
© Left: James Bellorini, top right: Simon Annand

As the Edinburgh Festival enters its final week and summer begins to wind down, this autumn's theatre offerings begin to emerge with some big shows across the UK opening. But, there are also some special one-offs, like the first ever "Public Acts" show at the National.

Sally George and Rafaella Hutchinson

5. The Rise and Fall of Little Voice

Park Theatre, until 15 September

Jim Cartwright's urban fairytale returns to London with a new production at north London's Park Theatre, directed by Tom Latter. The classic play has a family twist this time around with real-life mother-daughter duo Rafaella Hutchinson and Sally George playing Little Voice and her meddling mother. Definitely worth a visit to see the pair on stage!

Read about the Park's newest season

Charles Edwards, Patricia Hodge and Paul Jesson
© Dan Wooller for WhatsOnStage

4. Copenhagen

Chichester's Minerva Theatre, until 22 September

Michael Frayn's politically charged historical piece is brought to Chichester for a new outing directed by long-time collaborator Michael Blakemore (who directed the original Tony Award-winning production). Patricia Hodge, Charles Edwards and Paul Jesson lead the cast, which follows the physicist Heisenberg as he grapples with guilt in the midst of the Second World War.

Watch Chichester's Flowers For Mrs Harris in rehearsals

The Prisoner
© Simon Annand

3. The Prisoner

Edinburgh's Lyceum, 22 to 26 August

Veteran director Peter Brook is returning to UK stages with Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord's The Prisoner, which is co-written by Brook and his long-time collaborator Marie-Hélène Estienne. Set outside a prison and exploring truth and justice, the show will hot foot it from Edinburgh to London next month for a run at the National.

Check out our Q&A with Peter Brook

Pericles in rehearsals
© James Bellorini

2. Pericles

National Theatre, 26 to 28 August

The National Theatre's Pericles is something a bit special – as part of their "Public Acts" initiative, the venue is staging a piece featuring a community company from all across London, in partnership with Queen's Theatre Hornchurch. Shakespeare's classic play about a troubled prince is revamped by Chris Bush with music by Jim Fortune. Though sadly the show's now sold out – definitely worth queueing for returns!

Find out more about the National's current season

1. Tamburlaine

RSC, until 1 December 2018

Former artistic director Michael Boyd returns to the RSC with this epic, bloody and violent production of Marlowe's epic. Following a shepherd who gains absolute power over a nation, the piece stars Jude Owusu as the titular character. Expect a gore-streaked and intense production.

See the full casting for Tamburlaine

Last chance to see: A Monster Calls (The Old Vic), Me and My Girl (Chichester Festival Theatre), Knights of the Rose (Arts Theatre)