Tickets for the National Theatre’s upcoming season will go on sale to the public on Thursday 9 November. In the Olivier theatre Nye, Tim Price‘s new play directed by Rufus Norris, charts the life of Aneurin ‘Nye’ Bevan and his battle to create the NHS. Michael Sheen is cast as Nye in this co-production with Wales Millennium Centre.
In the Lyttelton is a revival of Dear Octopus by Dodie Smith, directed by Emily Burns and with a cast that includes Lindsay Duncan. This is followed by London Tide, based on Charles Dickens’ Our Mutual Friend, which will be directed by Ian Rickson and adapted by Ben Power, with original songs throughout by acclaimed singer-songwriter, PJ Harvey, and Ben Power.
In the Dorfman theatre is Till the Stars Come Down, a passionate, heartbreaking and hilarious portrayal of a larger-than-life family struggling to come to terms with a changing world, written by former writer-in-residence Beth Steel and directed by Bijan Sheibani. Completing the season is Underdog: The Other Other Brontë, an irreverent retelling of the life and legend of the Brontë sisters written by Sarah Gordon and directed by Natalie Ibu, in a co-production with Northern Stage.
Also announced today is the transfer of Tim Price’s new play Nye, directed by Rufus Norris, which will play at the Wales Millennium Centre following its world premiere in the Olivier theatre in February. Michael Sheen will continue his role as Nye Bevan in this strictly limited run from 18 May until 1 June 2024.
From February 2024 the National Theatre will pilot a selected number of early evening performances at 6.30pm. This trial follows a major piece of research undertaken by the National Theatre in recent months to understand more from audiences about their post-Covid lifestyles and habits, including varying working patterns and journey times, particularly for those living outside of London. The early evening performances offer flexibility for audiences to make the most of their evening, with more time after curtain down to eat or to travel. The 6.30pm performances will fall on Tuesdays and Thursdays, with a limited number available for every new production playing on the South Bank in the first half of the year.
Nye is a new play by Tim Price (Teh Internet is Serious Business) directed by Rufus Norris (Small Island), charting the life of Aneurin ‘Nye’ Bevan. From campaigning at the coalfield to leading the battle to create the NHS, Nye Bevan is often referred to as the politician with greatest influence on our country without ever being Prime Minister. Michael Sheen (Under Milk Wood) plays Nye Bevan in this surreal and spectacular journey through the life and legacy of the man who transformed Britain’s welfare state. Cast also includes Remy Beasley, Roger Evans, Jon Furlong, Stephanie Jacob, Kezrena James, Tony Jayawardena, Rebecca Killick, Rhodri Meilir and Sharon Small.
Directed by Rufus Norris, theSet Designer is Vicki Mortimer, Costume Designer Kinnetia Isidore, Lighting Designer Paule Constable, Co-Choreographers Steven Hoggett and Jess Willams, Composer Will Stuart, Sound Designer Donato Wharton, Projection Designer Jon Driscoll and Casting Director Alastair Coomer CDG.
Playing in the Olivier theatre 24 February until 11 May, with press night on 6 March.
Nye is a co-production with Wales Millennium Centre, where it will play from 18 May until 1 June. Tickets for these performances will go on sale to the public on 27 October.
Dear Octopus by Dodie Smith (I Capture the Castle) will play in the Lyttelton theatre from February, directed by National Theatre Associate Emily Burns (Jack Absolute Flies Again) in its first revival since the 1960s. When a golden wedding anniversary reunites the Randolph family on the eve of WWII, Dora and Charles must reckon with the adults their children have become. Their children, meanwhile, are haunted by the memory of the family they once were. Heartbreaking and joyful, this captivating revival is a moving dissection of family and what it means to grow up and return home. Lindsay Duncan (Hansard) is cast as Dora alongside Malcolm Sinclair,with further casting to be announced.
Directed by Emily Burns, the Set and Costume Designer is Frankie Bradshaw, Lighting Designer Oliver Fenwick, Composer Nico Muhly, Sound Designer Tingying Dong and Casting Director Bryony Jarvis-Taylor.
Playing in the Lyttelton theatre from 7 February until 27 March, with press night on 14 February.
Following Dear Octopus in the Lyttelton theatre is London Tide, based on Charles Dickens’ Our Mutual Friend. Directed by Ian Rickson (Translations) and adapted by Ben Power (The Lehman Trilogy), with original songs throughout, the genius of Dickens meets the fierce musical imagination of acclaimed singer-songwriter, PJ Harvey.
A storm rages and, in the darkest part of the night, a body is pulled from the swirling Thames. Across the city, two young women confront an uncertain future. In Limehouse, Lizzie Hexam struggles to break free of the river and its dark secrets. On the other side of town, Bella Wilfer mourns a lost marriage. The appearance of the mysterious John Rokesmith has the potential to change their lives for ever. Will they sink or swim? This romantic and propulsive thriller is a hymn to the city and the river that runs through it.
Cast includes Brandon Grace, Scott Karim, Bella Maclean, Tom Mothersdale, Ami Tredrea and Peter Wight.
Directed by Ian Rickson, the Set and Costume Designer is Bunny Christie, Lighting Designer Jack Knowles, Music Director Ian Ross, Co-Sound Designers Tingying Dong and Christopher Shutt, Movement Director Anna Morrissey and Casting Director Bryony Jarvis-Taylor.
Playing in the Lyttelton theatre from 10 April until 22 June, with press night on 17 April.
Opening in the Dorfman theatre in January is Till the Stars Come Down, a new play by former National Theatre writer-in-residence Beth Steel (The House of Shades) and directed by Bijan Sheibani (Barber Shop Chronicles). Over the course of a hot summer’s day, a family gathers to welcome a newcomer into their midst. But as the vodka flows and dances are shared, passions boil over and the limits of love are tested. This new play is a passionate, heartbreaking and hilarious portrayal of a larger-than-life family struggling to come to terms with a changing world.
Cast includes Lorraine Ashbourne, Lucy Black, Lisa McGrillis, Sinéad Matthews, Derek Riddell, Ruby Stokes, Alan Williams and Marc Wootton.
Directed by Bijan Sheibani, the Set and Costume Designer is Samal Blak, Lighting Designer Paule Constable, Choreographer and Movement Director Aline David, Sound Designer Gareth Fry, Fight Director Kev McCurdy, Intimacy Coordinator Asha Jennings-Grant,Staff Director Stephan Mysko von Schultze and Casting Director Alastair Coomer CDG.
Playing in the Dorfman theatre from 24 January until 16 March, with press night on 31 January.
Underdog: The Other Other Brontë by Sarah Gordon (The Edit) will then play from March 2024, directed by Northern Stage Artistic Director Natalie Ibu (The White Card) in a co-production with Northern Stage.
Winner of the 2020 Nick Darke Writer’s Award, this play is an irreverent retelling of the life and legend of the Brontë sisters, and the story of the sibling power dynamics that shaped their uneven rise to fame. This is not a story about well-behaved women. This is a story about the power of words. It’s about sisters and sisterhood, love and jealousy, support and competition.
Cast includes Rhiannon Clements, Adele James and Gemma Whelan.
Directed by Natalie Ibu, the Set and Costume Designer is Grace Smart, Lighting Designer Zoe Spurr, Sound Designer Alexandra Faye Braithwaite and Casting Director Naomi Downham.
Playing in the Dorfman theatre from 27 March until 25 May, with press night on 4 April.