National Theatre Summer 2022

National Theatre reveals new summer productions for its Olivier, Lyttelton and Dorfman stages

The National Theatre in London has announced its new slate of shows for Summer 2022.

In the Olivier Theatre will be Jack Absolute Flies Again, billed as a riotous new version of Sheridan’s comedy The Rivals, co-written by Richard Bean – who wrote one of the National’s biggest ever hits, One Man, Two Guvnors, and Oliver Chris (Emma). It will run in the Olivier in July 2022. Emily Burns (The Comeback) is directing, and Laurie Davidson (Cats) stars as Jack Absolute, alongside Caroline Quentin (Jonathan Creek) as Mrs Malaprop, Natalie Simpson (Three Sisters) as Lydia Languish, Kelvin Fletcher (Emmerdale) as Dudley Scunthorpe and Kerry Howard (Him & Her) as Lucy. James Corrigan, Theo Cowan, Jordan Metcalfe, George Kemp, Akshay Sharan, Tim Steed, Geoffrey Towers, Shona White and Helena Wilson are also in the cast.

The show will feature set and costume design is by Mark Thompson, lighting design by Tim Lutkin, composer is Paul Englishby, sound design by Paul Arditti and video and projection design by Jeff Sugg. Physical comedy director will be Toby Park, choreography by Lizzi Gee and staff director Cara Nolan.

In the Lyttelton theatre, and also in July 2022, director Simon Godwin (Romeo & Juliet) returns to the venue to direct Shakespeare’s timeless romantic comedyMuch Ado About Nothing. Set at the fictional Hotel Messina on the Italian Riviera, the show stars Katherine Parkinson (The IT crowd) as Beatrice and John Heffernan (The Pursuit of Love) as Benedick. Set design will be by Anna Fleischle, costume design by Evie Gurney, lighting design by Lucy Carter, composer is Michael Bruce, sound design is by Christopher Shutt, and staff Director is Hannah Joss.

In September in the Lyttelton, Artistic Director of the Bush Theatre, Lynette Linton, directs a new production of Pearl Cleage’s Blues for an Alabama Sky. Set in 1930 during the Harlem renaissance, the play is about four friends whose lives and passions collide when a newcomer from Alabama arrives. Samira Wiley (The Handmaid’s Tale, Orange is the New Black) stars as Angel Allen, with Ronkẹ Adékoluẹjo (Three Sisters) as Delia Patterson, Osy Ikhile (Sweat) as Leland Cunningham, Sule Rimi (Barber Shop Chronicles) as Sam Thomas and Giles Terera (Death of England: Face to Face) as Guy Jacobs.

Set and costume design will be by Frankie Bradshaw, lighting design by Oli Fenwick, movement director Kane Husbands, composer Ben Kwasi Burrell, sound designer by George Dennis and Staff Director TD Moyo.

In the Dorfman Theatre in July, award-winning writer and comedian Francesca Martinez will present her new play All of Us, directed by Ian Rickson. All of Us is a powerful and timely drama exploring the human cost of abandoning those who struggle to fit in. The play stars Francesca Martinez alongside Chris Anderson, Oliver Alvin-Wilson, Bryan Dick, Kevin Hely, Christopher-John Slater, Francesca Mills and Wanda Opalinska. The creative team features set and costume design is by Georgia Lowe, lighting design by Anna Watson, movement direction by Lucy Cullingford, composer Stephen Warbeck, sound design by Gregory Clarke, fight director Terry King, and staff Director is Hana Pascal Keegan.

National Theatre Live continues its programme this Spring/Summer, with live broadcasts to cinemas of Henry V from The Donmar Warehouse on 21 April, and Straight Line Crazy, the new play by David Hare starring Ralph Fiennes from the Bridge Theatre on 26 May.

In terms of the National Theatre in the West End and on tour, their acclaimed production of The Ocean at the End of the Lane continues in London’s West End until 14 May. This is the first major stage adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s work, and is adapted by Joel Horwood and directed by Katy Rudd.

Also the National’s production of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time based on Mark Haddon’s best-selling novel, adapted by Simon Stephens and directed by Marianne Elliott, continues on its 10th anniversary tour of the UK and Ireland.


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