A Very Expensive Poison

A Very Expensive Poison

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A shocking assassination in the heart of London. In a bizarre mix of high-stakes global politics and radioactive villainy, a man pays with his life.

John Crowley (Brooklyn, The Goldfinch) directs Lucy Prebble’s (The Effect, ENRON) reimagining of Luke Harding’s jaw-dropping exposé of the events behind the notorious death of Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko.

A Very Expensive Poison is booking from 24 August until 28 September 2019 at the Old Vic Theatre, London.


At a time of global crises and a looming Cold War, A Very Expensive Poison re-imagines and dramatises the events behind the notorious death of Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko. When a shocking assassination happens in the middle of London, what happens when a man has to pay with his life? Global politics and radioactive relationships come to the fore in this striking new play that sends us careering through the shadowy world of international espionage from Moscow to Mayfair.


The cast features Tom Brooke Jerusalem (Royal Court) as Alexander Litvinenko and MyAnna Buring as Marina Litvinenko, Alexander’s wife.

Reece Shearsmith The League of Gentlemen, Hangman (Wyndham’s), The Dresser (Duke of York’s) will play ‘The President’. Peter Polycarpou Oslo, City of Angels (West End) will play Russian tycoon Boris Bereszovsky, with Lloyd Hutchinson and Michael Shaeffer playing Dimitri Kotvun and Andrei Luguvoi respectively, Alexander Litvinenko’s two former agents.

The cast is completed by Thomas Arnold, Callum Coates, Marc Graham, Amanda Hadingue, Yasmine Holness-Dove, Robyn Moore, Sarah Seggari, Gavin Spokes and Bea Svistunenko.


Adapted from Luke Harding’s novel by Lucy Prebble and directed by John Crowley.


Coming Soon

Theatre Information

The Old Vic
Address: Waterloo Road, London, SE1 8NB
Nearest Underground: Waterloo (Jubilee line, Northern line, Bakerloo line)
Nearest Buses: 1, 68, 168, 171, 172, 176, 188, 501

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