Booking to 18 February 2023
★★★★★ “Captivating” – The Times
Olivier Award winning playwright James Graham (Quiz, Ink, Labour of Love, This House) brings his compelling new political play Best of Enemies to the Noel Coward Theatre in London.
Best of Enemies stars Zachary Quinto (The Boys in the Band, Star Trek, Heroes) as Gore Vidal, alongside David Harewood (Homeland, Super Girl, Ten Percent) reprising his role as the right-wing figurehead William F. Buckley.
Directed by Jeremy Herrin (This House, People, Places and Things),Best of Enemies opens in the West End this November following its world premiere at the Young Vic stars Charles Edwards (The Crown) and David Harewood (Homeland).
Inspired by Morgan Neville and Robert Gordon’s 2015 documentary about the nightly 1969 US TV debates between right and left-leaning intellectuals William F Buckley Jr and Gore Vidal, their TV clashes were both compellingly entertaining, but also set the template for the future confrontational nature of US TV news.
Best of Enemies is a Young Vic and Headlong co-production, and is now playing at the Noel Coward Theatre until 18 February 2023.
What's the story of Best of Enemies?
1968 – a year of protest that divided America. As two men fight to become the next President, all eyes are on the battle between two others: the cunningly conservative William F Buckley Jr., and the iconoclastic liberal Gore Vidal. Beliefs are challenged and slurs slung as these political idols feud nightly in a new television format, debating the moral landscape of a shattered nation. Little do they know they’re about to open up a new frontier in American politics, and transform television news forever…
Who is in the cast of Best of Enemies?
The cast stars Zachary Quinto (The Boys in the Band, Star Trek, Heroes) as Gore Vidal, and David Harewood (Homeland, Super Girl, Ten Percent) as the right-wing figurehead William F. Buckley.
The cast also includes Deborah Alli, Emilio Doorgasingh, Clare Foster, Tom Godwin, John Hodgkinson, Syrus Lowe, Kevin McMonagle and Sam Otto who will each perform multiple roles within the play including Andy Warhol, James Baldwin, Patricia Buckley, Howard Austen, Aretha Franklin and Martin Luther-King. The ensemble includes David Boyle, Lincoln Conway, Vivienne Ekwulugo, Jamie Hogarth and Saaj Raja.
Who are the creative team of Best of Enemies?
Best of Enemies is Written by James Graham and Directed by Jeremy Herrin, with Set and CostumeDesign by Bunny Christie, Lighting Design by Paule Constable, Sound Design by Tom Gibbons, Video Design by Luke Halls, Composition by Benjamin Kwasi Burrell, Movement Direction by Shelley Maxwell, Associate Movement Direction by Sarita Piotrowski, Casting by Charlotte Sutton CDG, Voice and Dialect by Hazel Holder, Gurkiran Kaur and Salvatore Sorce, with Jerwood Assistant Director Annie Kershaw, Jerwood Assistant Designer Amy Finch and Boris Karloff Trainee Assistant Director Sabrina Richmond.
Reviews of Best of Enemies★★★★★ "A dazzling night out" - Evening Standard (Noel Coward Theatre)
★★★★★ "A scintillating, perfectly-timed play" - Financial Times (Noel Coward Theatre)
★★★★★ "Best of Enemies isn’t just a treat for political geeks: it’s a compelling human drama, as wild and unruly as the decade it brings so passionately to life" - The Times (Noel Coward Theatre)
★★★★ "James Graham’s fabulous, frenetic play" - The Guardian (Noel Coward Theatre)
★★★★★ "David Harewood and Charles Edwards are phenomenal" - TimeOut (Young Vic)
★★★★★ "James Graham’s captivating drama is raw and timely" - The Times (Young Vic)
★★★★★ "James Graham serves up another thrilling, slyly humorous knockout" - i News (Young Vic)
★★★★ "Superb study of media and politics" - The Guardian (Young Vic)
★★★★ "Packs a real punch" - The Telegraph (Young Vic)
★★★★ "Harewood is tremendous" - Evening Standard (Young Vic)
Matinees: Wednesday, Saturday
Performance information is for guidance only. Check booking calendar for details.
Show warning: This show contains themes of racism, homophobia and violence. There is occasional use of homophobic and racist slurs as well as misgendering. There are references to murder, antisemitism and frequent strong language.
Venue InformationNoel Coward Theatre, St Martin's Lane, London, WC2N 4AA
Nearest Tube or Train: Leicester Square (Northern line, Piccadilly line)
Nearest Buses: 24, 29, 176