Kevin Spacey leads Old Vic season

Published March 18, 2014

The Old Vic’s Artistic Director Kevin Spacey will celebrate his 10th anniversary at the helm by returning to the stage to star in one-man show Clarence Darrow, which plays as part of an exciting season that will also see Kristin Scott Thomas make her Old Vic debut.

Spacey’s summer/autumn line-up will follow Clarence Darrow with two takes on classics; Yaël Farber’s re-imagining of The Crucible and a Frank McGuiness-penned version of Electra. All three productions will be staged in the round following in the footsteps of the venue’s current production Other Desert Cities.

One-man show Clarence Darrow will kick the summer season off from 28 May to 15 June, marking the third time Spacey has played the pioneering lawyer in his career following appearances in the Old Vic’s Inherit The Wind and film Darrow.

Directed by Thea Sharrock, who returns to the venue to direct David W Rintels compelling one-man piece following 2011’s Cause Célèbre, the tour de force recounts a selection of pivotal moments from the larger than life Darrow’s legendary career and will see the House Of Cards star take audiences on a journey to understanding how the lawyer earned his reputation as a civil rights hero.

Describing himself as “thrilled” to be returning the Old Vic’s stage following credits in shows including Richard II, Speed-The-Plow and The Philadelphia Story, Spacey also paid tribute to his forthcoming director, calling Sharrock “one of the most exciting directors of her generation”.

Farber’s production of The Crucible, Arthur Miller’s classic story about the Salem witch trials, will follow from 24 June to 13 September.

An award-winning international director and playwright whose recent production of Mies Julie was named one of the top ten productions of 2012 by the New York Times, Farber will no doubt bring her unique hard-hitting and often controversial style to the famous story of a repressive Puritan community where intolerance collides with lust and superstition. Casting is still to be announced.

Tackling another classic, director Ian Rickson and Spacey’s fellow Hollywood screen performer Scott Thomas will reunite following acclaimed productions of Old Times, Betrayal and the actress’ Olivier Award earning performance in The Seagull to present revenge tragedy Electra from 20 September to 20 December.

Audiences will no doubt be excited to see the well-known actress make her Old Vic debut following West End productions of As You Desire Me and Three Sisters. Arguably best known for her extensive film credits, the Academy Award nominated actress has starred in screen hits including The English Patient, Gosford Park, Four Weddings And A Funeral, I Loved You So Long and Tell No One.

Commenting on the diverse and star-studded season, Spacey said: “To present Arthur Miller’s The Crucible is an honour and I am delighted to be joining forces with Ian Rickson and Kristin Scott Thomas and our long-time co-producer Sonia Friedman to come together with Electra. I know our audience will be excited by this programme and I can’t wait to be back on stage myself.”

"I know our audience will be excited by this programme and I can’t wait to be back on stage myself"