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NT Weighs into Climate Debate via Greenland

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Climate change continues to a hot topic in theatrical as well as political and other terms. And, in the new year, the National Theatre, will weigh in with its contribution to the debate.

Greenland, a new piece of specially commissioned documentary theatre about planetary “uncertainty, confusion and the future of everything”, is written by no fewer than four playwrights - Moira Buffini, Penelope Skinner, Jack Thorne and (former Whatsonstage.com staffer) Matt Charman – with NT associates Bijan Sheibani and Ben Power as director and dramaturg respectively.

Other newly announced productions include Ryan Craig’s new play The Holy Rosenbergs, starring Henry Goodman and directed by Laurie Sansom, and Clifford Odets’ 1938 play, Rocket to the Moon, on the heels of the current West End revival of Odets’ The Country Girl, in addition to Danny Boyle’s much-anticipated adaptation of Mary Shelley thriller Frankenstein, with Benedict Cumberbatch and Jonny Lee Miller alternating in the roles of the scientist and his creature, for which exact dates have now been set.

In the Lyttelton

Greenland premieres in rep in the NT Lyttelton on 1 February 2011 (previews from 25 January). The play asks: what on earth is happening to our planet? And who knows what, and what can or should be done about it? Knowing what and who to trust in the climate debate is an increasingly bewildering challenge.

The writing team has spent six months interviewing key individuals from the worlds of science, politics, business and philosophy to create a piece that combines the factual and theatrical in several separate but connected narratives collide forming “a provocative response to the most urgent questions of our time”.

Greenland is designed by Bunny Christie, with lighting by Jon Clark, video design by Finn Ross, sound and music by Dan Jones, and movement by Aline David. The cast includes Michael Gould, Isabella Laughland, Amanda Lawrence, Tunji Lucas, Lyndsey Marshal, Peter McDonald and Rhys Rusbatch. The production will be accompanied by an extensive programme of platforms and free “Talkaoke” discussion sessions on the subject

Following Greenland in the NT Lyttelton by Angus Jackson’s revival of Rocket to the Moon, which opens on 30 March 2011 (previews from 23 March). A ruthless young woman turns a dentist’s married, humdrum life upside down in Clifford Odets’ story of rivalry and frustrated dreams.

In the Cottesloe & Olivier

In Ryan Craig’s new play The Holy Rosenbergs, which opens on 16 March 2011 (previews from 8 March), Henry Goodman plays big-hearted patriarch David, who clings to a deal that could save his catering company and his standing in Edgware’s Jewish community, while his children are at loggerheads. Northampton Royal & Derngate artistic director Laurie Sansom helms the premiere in the NT Cottesloe, where his Northampton productions of Spring Storm and Beyond the Horizon transferred earlier this year.

And in the NT Olivier, Frankenstein will open in rep on 22 February 2011 (previews from 5 February). The new play, based on Mary Shelley’s classic 1818 gothic novel, is written by Nick Dear and directed by Danny Boyle, making a stage return after a long absence and film success with the likes of Slumdug Millionaire. It’s designed by Mark Tildesley, with costumes by Suttirat Anne Larlarb, lighting by Bruno Poet, movement by Toby Sedgwick and sound by Mike Walker. Frankenstein will be broadcast to cinemas around the world via NT Live on 17 March 2011.


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