James Graham’s new play Dear England is heading to the National Theatre starring Joseph Fiennes as football manager Gareth Southgate
A new play about the England men’s football team managed by Gareth Southgate is coming to the National Theatre, written by James Graham (Best of Enemies, Tammy Faye, Sherwood).
Dear England is set when Gareth Southgate was manager of the England team, and will star Joseph Fiennes (The Handmaid’s Tale, Shakespeare in Love) as Southgate.
Directed by the Almeida’s artistic director Rupert Goold, Dear England will play the National’s Olivier Theatre from 10 June to 11 August 2023.
Joining Rupert Goold in the creative team will be set designer Es Devlin (The Crucible, The Lehman Trilogy), costume designer Evie Gurney, lighting designer Jon Clark, and video design by Ash J Woodward.
National Theatre director Rufus Norris said in a press statement: “I am delighted to be welcoming James Graham back to the National Theatre this summer with his new play. Dear England is a captivating examination into the complex psychology of the much loved ’beautiful game’.”
Writer James Graham said: “To tell this story of the national game on the stage of the National Theatre is just the greatest thrill, if an intimidating responsibility. The experience of working on This House at the National Theatre 10 years ago changed my life as an emerging writer. Now, with Dear England, to be given the opportunity to shine a light on another public institution in the form of the England men’s football team is, I know, an exciting opportunity. What Gareth Southgate has attempted in his quiet cultural reform of England football I find epic and deeply moving. And I’m so grateful to be surrounded by some of British theatre’s most exciting creative talent to unite around this new show.”
The National Theatre also announced today that its acclaimed production of The Crucible will transfer into the West End, directed by Lyndsey Turner and designed by Es Devlin.
James Graham’s play Best of Enemies completed its run at the weekend at the Noel Coward Theatre in London, starring David Harewood and Zachary Quinto.
Currently playing at the National Theatre is Simon Stone’s new version of Phaedra starring Janet McTeer in the Lyttelton Theatre, and musical Standing at the Sky’s Edge in the Olivier Theatre. Both plays have got great reviews – read Phaedra reviews, and Standing at the Sky’s Edge reviews.
Also the National Theatre’s production of The Lehman Trilogy, directed by Sam Mendes, is now playing at the Gillian Lynne Theatre.