Theatre News

Sam Mendes to direct Jez Butterworth play in new Royal Court season

Other highlights include the premiere of Simon Stephens’ ”Nuclear War” and John Tiffany directing Jim Cartwright’s ”Road”

Sam Mendes, John Tiffany and Simon Stephens
Sam Mendes, John Tiffany and Simon Stephens
© Dan Wooller for WhatsOnStage

The Royal Court have announced their new season with highlights including Sam Mendes directing Jez Butterworth's new play The Ferryman, Simon Stephens' Nuclear War directed by Imogen Knight and John Tiffany directing Jim Cartwright's Road.

The season kicks off with debbie tucker green's A Profoundly Affectionate, Passionate Devotion to Someone (-Noun), a play about three couples which runs in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs from 28 February to 1 April 2017.

At the same time, Simon McBurney will direct The Kid Stays in the Picture – a new piece about the life of Robert Evans, one of the most powerful figures in '60s and '70s Hollywood and producer of The Godfather – in the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs from 7 March to 8 April 2017. The production is co-produced with Patrick Milling Smith, Barbara Broccoli, Michael Wilson, Brian Carmody and in association with Complicite.

From 19 April to 6 May, Imogen Knight (Linda, Amadeus) will direct Simon Stephens‘ (Herons, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time) new play Nuclear War in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs. Developed by the Actors Touring Company, it explores 'desire, death and time'.

Sam Mendes (Skyfall, Spectre) will return to stage directing for the first time since Charlie and the Chocolate Factory to helm Jez Butterworth's (Jerusalem, Mojo) new play, The Ferryman. Premiering in the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs from 24 April to 20 May 2017, The Ferryman takes place in rural Derry in 1981 and is set in a farmhouse during preparations for the annual harvest. The production is developed by and co-produced with Sonia Friedman Productions and in association with Neal Street Productions.

The Royal Court commission Manwatching, written by an anonymous woman and performed by an unprepared male actor, will transfer to the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs from 10 May to 20 May following a successful run in the Paines Plough Roundabout at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2015.

Following on from the critically acclaimed Violence & Son, Gary Owen (Iphigenia in Splott) returns to the Royal Court with Killology, about a controversial new gaming experience in which players are rewarded for torturing victims. Directed by Rachel O’Riordan (Iphigenia in Splott), in a co-production with the Sherman Theatre, it runs in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs from 25 May to 24 June 2017.

Alice Birch (Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again) will make her Jerwood Theatre Downstairs debut with Anatomy of a Suicide. Directed by Katie Mitchell (Cleansed), the new play is about three generations of women who have to deal with a painful legacy, and runs from 3 June to 8 July 2017.

Thirty years after it opened at the Royal Court, John Tiffany (Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Let the Right One In) directs Jim Cartwright‘s Road in the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs from 21 July to 9 September 2017. Cartwright's seminal play, focuses on the inhabitants of an unnamed northern road in '80s Britain.

Also running in the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs in September will be B by Chilean playwright Guillermo Calderón and directed by Sam Pritchard, and Chris Thorpe‘s new play Victory Condition directed by Vicky Featherstone.

Casting for all the above productions is to be announced.

Tickets for the new season go on general sale on Friday 4 November 2016.