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Mamet and Ibsen in Almeida new season

First Published 12 May 2010, Last Updated 12 May 2010

Stephen Dillane in Ibsen’s The Master Builder and a new stage version of David Mamet’s House Of Games will continue the 2010 autumn season at Islington’s Almeida theatre.

Playwright Richard Bean, whose version of The Hypochondriac was previously staged at the Almeida, returns to the venue to present his stage adaptation of Mamet’s 1987 film House Of Games from 9 September (press night 16 September) to 9 November.

Lindsay Posner, who directed The Hypochondriac, teams up once again with Bean to direct this story about a Havard-educated psychoanalyst who helps one of her patients settle his gambling debts and is drawn into the seedy underworld of the House Of Games poker club. Seduced by charismatic hustler Mike, Margaret convinces herself that she can make an academic study of the con-artist. Before she realises it, Margaret is entangled in a fast-paced thriller. 

Mamet’s work as a playwright includes Romance, Oleanna, Glengarry Glen Ross and Speed-The-Plow, all of which have been produced in London. Bean’s own plays include the Laurence Olivier Award-nominated England People Very Nice at the National Theatre, The English Game, Harvey, Honeymoon Suite and Toast.

The autumn season continues with Kenneth McLeish’s translation of Ibsen’s The Master Builder, which plays from 12 November (press night 18 November) to 8 January.

Dillane returns to the Almeida theatre to star as Master Builder Halvard Solness, whose career has come at a price; his family life is in ruins and he lives in fear that the next generation will rise up and brush him aside. As Solness completes his architectural masterpiece, a bewitching young woman arrives to collect a debt; will she be his ultimate downfall?

Dillane precedes his return to the Almeida – where he last starred in a one-man Macbeth – with his appearance in Sam Mendes’s Bridge Project double-bill at the Old Vic this summer. Dillane’s other stage credits include Hamlet, The Real Thing, The Coast Of Utopia and Drunk Enough To Say I Love You.

He is directed in The Master Builder by Travis Preston, Artistic Director of a Californian performing arts institution, who previously worked with Dillane at the Almeida on Macbeth.

The autumn programme at the Almeida follows Lynn Nottage’s Ruined, which is currently playing to 5 June, and Ingmar Bergman’s Through A Glass Darkly, which plays from 10 June to 31 July.



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