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Hampstead Downstairs debuts new drama

Published 15 December 2014

Morgan Lloyd Malcolm’s revenge thriller The Wasp and Matt Hartley’s friendship testing drama Deposit will both receive their premieres at Hampstead Downstairs in the new year.

Malcolm’s tale of score settling, which will be directed by Tom Attenborough, finds former school acquaintances Heather and Carla meeting for tea in a café. Not so unusual, you might think, but these women have grown up to live very different lives and have little in common. Then Heather offers Carla a large amount of money attached to an unexpected proposition.

Malcolm will be hoping The Wasp, which runs from 29 January to 7 March, follows in the footsteps of her previous Hampstead Downstairs success, Belongings, which transferred to the West End’s Trafalgar Studios in 2011.

Hartley’s Deposit (12 March to 11 April) is the tale of two couples trying to get onto the property ladder in London. With rent, tax, student loans, pensions and bills making it difficult to save for a deposit they discover a solution: rent a minute one-bedroom flat between them for a year. But with paper thin walls and a growing sense of claustrophobia, what will be discarded first, their friendship, their relationships or their property dream?

Hartley’s Hampstead Downstairs debut will be directed by Lisa Spirling, who previously directed Fault Lines and I Know How I Feel About Eve at the venue.

As The Wasp and Deposit play in Hampstead, another Downstairs success will play in the West End. Amelia Bullmore’s Di And Viv And Rose runs at the Vaudeville Theatre from 22 January. The story of three friends who met at university – played by Tamzin Outhwaite, Jenna Russell and Samantha Spiro – and the effect life has on their friendship, first played at Hampstead Downstairs in 2011 before transferring to the Off West End venue’s main stage last year.

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