Category Archives: Shows

This House

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‘a thrilling play that both relives history and transcends it’

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‘the show is so lucid, fascinating and well-staged’

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‘a treat and a triumph, this is a superlative night out’

Headlong associate Jeremy Herrin (People, Places and Things) directs the long awaited West End transfer of political play This House. Following the hugely successful Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company season, James Graham’s 2012 play is set to be the Garrick Theatre’s next instalment, opening for previews on November 19th 2016.

This House previously played two sell-out runs at the National Theatre, first opening at the National’s Cottesloe Theatre in September 2012. This House received unprecedented critical praise and was transferred to the Olivier Theatre for a longer run until May 2013. Now, the Westminster drama embarks on a run at Chichester Festival Theatre before heading into London’s West End.

Set between the fateful years of 1974 and 1979, which saw huge economic crisis and a hung parliament, This House takes place in the engine rooms of Westminster, where fist fights took place and votes were lost or won by one. Following turbulent times as Labour faced a vote of no confidence in James Callaghan’s government, Graham’s play delves behind the scenes of Parliament, studying the archaic traditions of previous politics. At a time when the country is beginning to question the current political system, This House strikes a relevant chord.

Don’t miss out on this pertinent play, which is marching into the West End after years of anticipating rumours. This House is set to open at London’s Garrick Theatre for a limited run beginning on November 19th 2016.

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This House is directed by Jeremy Herrin, who has had recent astounding success with People, Places and Things. An associate of Headlong, Herrin has also directed The Nether, Absent Friends and Another Country. With a penchant for political drama, writer James Graham’s recent works include The Vote at the Donmar Warehouse and Channel 4’s Coalition. His play Privacy is set to open in New York, starring Daniel Radcliffe. Creative team includes the show’s original designer Rae Smith and features sound design by Ian Dickinson, lighting design by Paule Constable and movement by Scott Ambler.

Casting includes Phil Daniels (Les Miserables, EastEnders)Nathaniel Parker (Wolf Hall)Steffan Rhodri (The Mentalists, Harry Potter)Kevin Doyle (Downton Abbey) as Michael Cocks, Malcolm Sinclair as Humphrey Atkins, Sarah Woodward as Lady Batley, David Hounslow as Joe Harper, Ed Hughes as Fred Silvester and Lauren O’Neil (Silent Witness, Midsomer Murders) as Ann Taylor. Further cast members include Christopher Godwin, Peter Landi, Matthew Pidgeon, Tony Turner, Giles Taylor and Orlando Wells.

Show Lengths and Times

This House opens at the Garrick Theatre London on November 19th until February 25th 2017, with an official press night on November 30th 2016. Performances are at 7:30pm every day excluding Sundays, with matinees on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday at 2:30pm.

Show running time is 2 hours and 55 minutes, including a 20 minute interval.

Suitable for Children?

This House is recommended for ages 14 and up.

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Tickets

Tickets for This House at the Garrick Theatre London are now on sale and you can book them above, by using the search form on the right of the page.

Reviews

Have you seen This House? If so please share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Red Velvet

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Lolita Chakrabarti’s multi award-winning play Red Velvet is the third production to feature as part of the Kenneth Branagh Season at the Garrick Theatre. Originally premiering at the Tricycle Theatre before transferring to St Ann’s Warehouse, Red Velvet has received wide acclaim.

In 1833 at the Theatre Royal Covent Garden, the greatest actor of the generation, Edmund Kean, collapses on stage during a performance of Othello. Young African American actor Ira Aldridge is drafted in as a replacement, but on the streets the public are rioting about the abolition of slavery. How will the cast, critics and audience react when a whole new kind of revolution is taking place in the theatre?

Directed by Indhu Rubasingham, Adrian Lester reprises his role as Ira Aldridge. Graduating from RADA, Lester is well-known for his performance in the hit TV series Hustle, as well as featuring in the James Bond film The Day After Tomorrow and has worked extensively in the theatre, his credits including Othello, Henry V and Hamlet. He has been nominated for Best Actor twice for his performance in Red Velvet, once in 2012 at the Whatsonstage Awards and in 2013 at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards.

Additional cast members include Ayesha Antoine as Connie, Simon Chandler as Bernard Warde/Terence, Alexander Cobb as Henry Forrester/Casimir, Mark Edel-Hunt as Charles Kean, Emun Elliot as Pierre Laporte, Charlotte Lucas as Ellen Tree, Caroline Martin as Halina Wozniak/Margaret Aldridge and Amy Morgan as Betty Lovell.

Branagh said “Writing, direction and performance are exceptional in Red Velvet. I’m immensely proud to be presenting this work. I was aware of its development from its inception and believe Chakrabarti has written an important and exhilarating play which in its discussion of performance, politics, and race is as entertaining as it is illuminating.”

Red Velvet will open January 23rd and is booking until February 27th 2016 at the Garrick Theatre.

The Entertainer

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‘a performance that is never less than thoroughly arresting’

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‘hauntingly beautiful, atmospheric production’

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‘one of the most iconic roles in post-war theatre’

John Osborne’s modern classic The Entertainer will be the fifth and final production in the Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company season at the Garrick Theatre. Directed by Rob Ashford, designed by Christopher Oram and starring Kenneth Branagh, the production will open in August 2016.

Set in post-war Britain within the faded glamour of music halls, The Entertainer follows the story of Archie Rice, in an examination of public façade and private torment. Considered to be a hugely important play of the twentieth century, Osborne’s tale is both dark comedy and kitchen-sink realism, depicting Archie’s drained domestic life. A middle-aged man with a daughter and second wife, Archie is a cold, bitter and tired vaudeville performer, whose downfall has reduced him to playing in a dilapidated seaside music hall. The Entertainer is considered as a social commentary, used to remark on the decline of the British Empire and the troubles in the Middle East, all of which remain relevant today.

Osborne originally wrote the part of Archie for Laurence Olivier, with The Entertainer first premiering at the Royal Court in 1957. Since then, the third-rate comedy performer has been played by a long list of theatrical greats, including Max Wall, Peter Bowles, Corin Redgrave and most recently Robert Lindsay in the 2007 Old Vic revival.

The Entertainer is sure to be the grand finale of Branagh’s season at the Garrick Theatre, and will play a limited season from August 20th 2016 to November 12th 2016.

Cast and Creative

The Entertainer is directed by Rob Ashford, with design by Christopher Oram.the-entertainer-satellite

Kenneth Branagh plays the iconic role of Archie Rice, following in the footsteps of legendary actor Laurence Olivier. Branagh has extensive stage and screen credits, most recently appearing in his own productions of The Winter’s Tale, Harlequinade and The Painkiller at the Garrick Theatre London. Gawn Grainger replaces John Hurt as Billy Rice, Archie’s father. Grainger has an illustrious stage career, including countless appearances at the National Theatre, Almeida, Globe and Donmar Warehouse. Most recently he appeared in the acclaimed Three Days in the Country.

Additional cast members include Jonah Hauer-King as Frank Rice, Sophie McShera (Jerusalem, Downton Abbey) as Jean Rice and Greata Scacchi as Phoebe Rice.

Show Lengths and Times

The Entertainer opens at the Garrick Theatre London on August 20th and is set to run until November 12th 2016. Performances are at 7:30pm every day, excluding Sundays, with an additional matinee on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday at 2:30pm.

Show running time roughly 2 hours and 30 minutes, including a 20 minute interval.

Suitable for Children?

The Entertainer may not be suited to young children. Please note that the Garrick Theatre does not supply booster cushions.

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Tickets

Tickets for The Entertainer at the Garrick Theatre London are now on sale and you can book them above, by using the search form on the right of the page.

Reviews

Have you seen The Entertainer? If so please share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Romeo and Juliet

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‘James delivers the Shakespearean goods’

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‘an immensely watchable, winning quality’

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‘stylish, accessible and illuminated’

The Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company have announced that acclaimed actor Freddie Fox will replace Richard Madden in the role of Romeo until the play closes.

Shakespeare’s classic romantic tragedy Romeo and Juliet is set to open at the Garrick Theatre London from May 2016 as part of the Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company season. Richard Madden and Lily James will play the star-crossed lovers, alongside Derek Jacobi as the hot-tempered Mercutio. Kenneth Branagh will direct this production, which is the fourth play to appear in his already successful collection of shows at the Garrick.

A heart-breaking tale of young love, Romeo and Juliet is one of Shakespeare’s most famous works and is regularly performed across the world. Romeo and Juliet tells the tale of two families locked in a feud, the Capulets and the Montagues. Romeo, the hot-blooded son of the Montagues, quickly and dangerously falls in love with Juliet, the beautiful teenage daughter of the Capulet. After meeting at a masquerade ball, the pair realise that they belong together, but their forbidden coupling has devastating and fatal consequences for their families and, ultimately, themselves.

Following on from Branagh’s successful The Winter’s Tale, which earned several 2016 Olivier Award nominations and secured an Olivier Award for Judi Dench for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Romeo and Juliet is the second Shakespeare work to be performed in Branagh’s season. The production opens on May 12th and will run until August 13th 2016.

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Directed by Kenneth Branagh and associate director Rob Ashford, Romeo and Juliet will feature design by Christopher Oram, who has assisted on production design throughout the season.

Romeo and Juliet reunites Lily James and Richard Madden, who previously starred together in Branagh’s 2015 film adaptation of Cinderella. Madden is best known for his performance as Robb Stark in Game of Thrones and his appearance in BBC One’s drama Lady Chatterley’s Lover. James made her name as Lady Rose in Downton Abbey and has played in a variety of stage productions. Derek Jacobi plays Mercutio, casting an interesting light on the age of the typically young character. Jacobi has an extensive history on both stage and screen, featuring in countless films, productions and television shows such as The Suicide, Uncle Vanya, The King’s Speech and National Theatre Live: King Lear.

Meera Syal (Goodness Gracious Me) joins the cast as the Nurse, with further casting including Marisa Berenson as Lady Capulet, Jack Colgrave Hirst as Benvolio, Tom Hanson as Paris, Ansu Kabia as Tybalt, Chris Porter as Lord Montague, Zoe Rainey as Lady Montague, Michael Rouse as Lord Capulet and Sam Valentine as Friar Laurence. Additional cast members include Matthew Hawksley, Taylor James, Racheal Ofori, Nikki Patel and Kathryn Wilder.

Romeo and Juliet satellite 4Show Lengths and Times

Romeo and Juliet opens at the Garrick Theatre London on May 12th and is set to run until August 13th 2016. Performances are at 7:30pm every day, excluding Sundays, with a matinee on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 2:30pm.

Show running time is approximately 2 hours and 40 minutes.

Suitable for Children?

Romeo and Juliet contains adult themes and language, with references of a sexual nature and scenes of violence, which are not suitable for children. Please note that the Garrick Theatre does not supply booster cushions.

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Tickets

Tickets for Romeo and Juliet at the Garrick Theatre London are now on sale and you can book them above, by using the search form on the right of the page.

Reviews

Have you seen Romeo and Juliet? If so please share your thoughts in the comments section below!

The Painkiller

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‘laughs from start to finish’

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‘gives the West End a perfect shot in the arm’

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‘Branagh is a dexterous expert at physical comedy’

Frank Verber’s classic French farce The Painkiller is the third production to feature as part of the Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company season of unmissable theatre at London’s Garrick Theatre. Adapted and directed by Sean FoleyThe Painkiller will star Kenneth Branagh and Rob Brydon and opens in March 2016. After playing to wide critical acclaim at the Lyric Theatre Belfast in 2011, the pair reprise their roles as Ralph and Dudley.

Set in a Belfast hotel with two guests who are staying in adjoining rooms, The Painkiller is a dark comical farce that will enthral audiences. Brydon plays depressed Welsh photographer Dudley, a character who is planning on committing suicide after being left by his wife. Ralph, played by Branagh, is a sharply-dressed hitman who has target trained on a witness due to testify in the courthouse across the street. When Dudley’s first suicide attempt goes wrong, Ralph comes to his aid and an unlikely partnership is formed, causing them to have a very different evening than they had planned.

A classic tale of slapstick comedy and mistaken identities, this show promises to be a hilarious run at the Garrick. Olivier Award-winning director Foley will deliver this comic tour-de-force, after receiving an Olivier for his work on the Morecambe and Wise homage The Play What I Wrote.  The Painkiller will play at the Garrick Theatre from March 5th to April 30th2016.

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The Painkiller is directed by award-winning actor and director Sean Foley, whose previous work includes the West End comedies The Ladykillers, What the Butler Saw, Jeeves & Wooster in Perfect Nonsense and The Play What I Wrote, which received the 2002 Olivier Award for Best Comedy. Further creative team includes set and costume designer Alice Power, with sound design by Ben & Max Ringham and lighting design by Tim Mitchell.

Branagh and Brydon will be joined by Claudie Blakley as Michelle, whose credits include appearances in television series’ such as Cranford and Larkrise to Candleford. Her extensive stage work includes Rules for Living at the National Theatre, Chimerica at the Almeida and West End, The Cherry Orchard, Attempts on her Life, Love and Money and Comedy of Errors. Made in Dagenham’s Mark Hadfield features as Vincent, alongside Alex Macqueen (Peaky Blinders, Black Mirror) as Dent. Marcus Fraser makes his professional debut as the Policeman.

Show Lengths and Times

The Painkiller opened at the Garrick Theatre London on March 5th and is set to run until April 30th 2016. Performances are at 7:30pm every day, excluding Sundays, with a matinee on Saturday at 2:30pm.

Show running time is approximately 85mins, without an interval.

Suitable for Children?

The Painkiller contains mild adult themes and language, with references of a sexual nature, and may not be suited to young children. Please note that the Garrick Theatre does not supply booster cushions.

Videos

Tickets

Tickets for The Painkiller at the Garrick Theatre London are now on sale and you can book them above, by using the search form on the right of the page.

Reviews

Have you seen The Painkiller? If so please share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Harlequinade

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‘appealingly silly piece’

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‘Wanamaker is devastatingly good’

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‘the Branagh season is devoted to actors’

Terrence Rattigan’s rarely performed comedy Harlequinade will run alongside The Winter’s Tale as part of the Kenneth Branagh season at the Garrick Theatre, starring Zoë Wanamaker as Dame Maud and Kenneth Branagh as Arthur Gosport. Wanamaker will also perform Rattigan’s one-woman monologue All On Her Own prior to each performance of Harlequinade. Co-directed by Branagh and Rob Ashford, Harlequinade/All On Her Own will open October 24th.

A whimsical comedy about a professional theatre company who are attempting to put on Romeo and Juliet and The Winter’s Tale, Harlequinade is a behind-the-scenes version of the chaos that comes with putting on a play. As Arthur and his wife Edna are about to play Romeo and Juliet, Arthur is sent on a downward spiral when elements of his past are accidentally revealed and he believes that he can no longer play young, romantic Romeo. Edna realises a shocking secret about her husband and the long-suffering Stage Manager Jack desperately wants to get a “real job,” which results in chaos and hilarity.

All On Her Own is a brief but powerfully atmospheric dramatic monologue, focusing on a woman alone at midnight with a secret to share. This piece has never been performed on the West End and is both sinister and heart-breaking, demonstrating the sheer diversity in Rattigan’s writing.

Alongside Wanamaker and Branagh, the Harlequinade cast includes Jaygann Ayeh as Second Halberdier, Tom Bateman as Jack Wakefield, Jessie Buckley as Muriel Palmer, Vera Chok as Miss Fishlock, Jack Colgrave Hirst as Tom Palmer, John Dagleish as Policeman, Hadley Fraser as First Halberdier, Ansu Kabia as Johnny, Stuart Neal as Fred Ingram, Zoe Rainey as Wardrobe Mistress, Miranda Raison as Edna Selby, Michael Rouse as Rehearsal Pianist, John Shrapnel as George Chudleigh, Kathryn Wilder as Joyce Langland and Jimmy Yuill as Mr Burton.

Harlequinade/All On Her Own will run in repertory with The Winter’s Tale, starring Judi Dench. The show opens on October 24th and will run until January 13th 2016.

The Winter’s Tale

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‘you won’t see a better version’

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‘a right royal return in triumph’

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‘a quietly stunning triumph’

Shakespeare’s tragicomedy The Winter’s Tale will be the first production presented as part of the Kenneth Branagh season at the Garrick Theatre. This reimagined classic tale of jealousy, redemption and obsession will star Dame Judi Dench as Paulina and Kenneth Branagh as Leontes. Co-directed by Branagh and Rob Ashford, the production opens October 17th.

Set in both a bohemian countryside and a Sicilian court, The Winter’s Tale follows the story of King Leontes’ descent into madness as he becomes consumed by jealousy. Believing that his wife Hermione has betrayed him with King Polixenes, Leontes orders his wife to be sent to prison, banishes his child and orders Polixenes to be poisoned. After sixteen years of being consumed by guilt, Leontes pays his debts and is reconciled with Hermione and his daughter in contrasting scenes that are full of laughter and merriment.

The cast playing alongside Dench and Branagh includes Tom Bateman as Florizel, Jessie Buckley as Perdita, Jack Colgrave Hirst as the Clown, Hadley Fraser as Polixenes, Michael Pennington as Antigonus, Miranda Raison as Hermione, John Shrapnel as Camillo, Kathryn Wilder as Mopsa, John Dagleish as Autolycus and Jimmy Yuil as Shepherd.

Additional cast includes Pierre Atri as Mamillius, Jaygann Ayeh as Archidamus, Vera Chok as Dorcas, Adam Garcia as Amadis, Rudi Goodman as Mamillius, Matthew Hawksley as Aegeum, Taylor James as Capnio, Pip Jordan as Shepherdess, Ansu Kabua as Cleomenes, Stuart Neal as Dion, Zoe Rainey as Emilia and Michael Rouse as Gaoler and Mariner.

The Winter’s Tale will run in repertory with Terence Rattigan’s Harlequinade, in which a troupe of actors prepare for a performance of Romeo and Juliet and The Winter’s Tale, creating an interesting juxtaposition of the two plays.

The Winter’s Tale will run from October 17th to January 16th 2016 at the Garrick Theatre.