The productions include The Collaboration, a new play written by Anthony McCarten and directed by Kwame Kwei-Armah, which explores the complex and captivating relationship between Jean-Michel Basquiat and Andy Warhol. The play will star Broadway actor Jeremy Pope (Choir Boy, Ain’t Too Proud) and Paul Bettany (The Avengers, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World) as the artists.
Also at the Young Vic next Spring is the Broadway transfer of Rodgers and Hammerstein musicalOklahoma! The Tony Award winning revival of Oklahoma! is reimagined for the 21st Century by Tony Award winner Daniel Fish, proving to be a provocative and probing new production. Read more about the new production of Oklahoma! at the Young Vic.
The Young Vic’s production of Best of Enemies, a co-production with Headlong, starts tomorrow 4 December at the theatre until 22 January 2022. A new play by James Graham (Quiz, Labour of Love), directed by Jeremy Herrin (This House, People, Places and Things),Best of Enemies stars Charles Edwards and David Harewood.
In the theatre’s Clare Theatre space, Deirdre McLaughlin, who is the 2021 Genesis Future Director Award recipient, directs a new play. Also five plays will bring together five directors and five writers, to make five-minute plays, with James Barnes, David Furlong, David Gilbert, Abigail Sewell and Khadifa Wong directing works by Babirye Bukilwa, Gael Le Cornec, Martin Crimp, Erinn Dhesi and Mufaro Makubika.
Following over twenty years supporting early-career artists, the Young Vic’s Directors Program will be reimagined as the Creators Program, a home for multi-disciplinary, anti-disciplinary and hybrid artists. Creative Headspace #2 will see the Young Vic support up to 50 members of the Genesis Network with a paid opportunity to be creative on the Young Vic’s TikTok channel, with support and workshops on working in the medium.
Kwame Kwei-Armah said in a statement to the press: “There is a moment at the beginning of every theatre show when you and your fellow audience take a collective breath before diving into a story that could change you or your perspective irrevocably. To my mind, the work and projects announced today channel this energy. As we offer them, I ask that together we take a breath, listen carefully, and be open to reimagining what we thought we knew.
“Tony Award-winning Oklahoma! unlocks a fresh perspective on a great American musical, whilst The Collaboration invites us behind the iconography and fame, and inside the intimate friendship between two artists. These stories ask us to lean in closely and challenge our preconceptions.
“At the same time, Sue Emmas and the Directors Program take an exciting new step: rebranding as the Creators Program. This new iteration innovates how we support anti-disciplinary and hybrid theatre-makers’ work and self-expression – as just one example, we launch Creative Headspace #2 by inviting artists to explore the medium of TikTok. We also take this moment to celebrate the 100 writers and directors who have participated in Five Plays, as we announce the latest group of artists to experiment with their craft in our house. Later next year Deirdre McLaughlin, our 2021 Genesis Future Directors Award recipient, will be supported to make a fully-resourced production at the Young Vic.
“Across all our work, we safeguard our accessible ticket pricing model, despite the financial challenges of the last 18 months, with 10% of tickets going free to schools, community members who experience barriers to access and early-career artists. Our commitment to channeling our work in the digital space continues, and we will be sharing more information about how audiences around the UK and globally can join us soon.
“So, I invite you to join us- whether you’re an artist, audience member or supporter – as together we take the bold step of inhabiting someone else’s world, receiving their perspective and being open to change. We’ll see you there as the lights go down – it’s going to be thrilling.”