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Hampstead invites playwrights Downstairs

Published 18 October 2010

Hampstead theatre is to turn a downstairs studio space into a laboratory for new writing with a season featuring work by Gary Lennon, Lucy Kirkwood and Ed Hime.

Hampstead Downstairs, as it will be known, kicks off with two productions directed by acclaimed directors Wilson Milam and Katie Mitchell.

Milam will direct .45, by fellow American Lennon, from 2 to 27 November with a cast that includes Natalie Dormer (Sweet Nothings at the Young Vic) and Daniel Caltagirone. A tale of revenge set in New York’s Hell’s Kitchen, .45 follows work-shy Ed, who is determined to live the American Dream one robbery at a time. His girlfriend, Pat, has grown tired of waiting for Ed to make her dreams come true and executes an elaborate plan of revenge.

.45 is followed by a new commission by Kirkwood and Hime, small hours, which runs from 12 January to 5 February. Weaving together the layers of a woman’s life, small hours centres on a woman who is awake when everyone else is asleep, watching the QVC shopping channel in her nightdress.

Hime, who has written for cult TV drama Skins, teams up with young playwright Kirkwood, whose plays include Tinderbox, Hedda and the forthcoming adaptation of Beauty And The Beast at the National Theatre this Christmas. 

The director of Beauty And The Beast, Mitchell, reunites with Kirkwood for small hours. Mitchell is an Artistic Associate at the National Theatre where her credits include Waves, …Some Trace Of Her, The Seagull and The Cat In The Hat.

Hampstead Downstairs will run alongside Ed Hall’s main season, which currently presents Shelagh Stevenson’s Enlightenment, followed by Athol Fugard’s The Train Driver.



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