National Theatre entrance (Photo: Philip Vile)
The National Theatre (Photo: Philip Vile)

Olivia Colman stars in National Theatre 2017 programme

Published October 11, 2016

Rufus Norris, Director of the National Theatre, has today announced the iconic institution’s programme for 2017, featuring four world premieres and two European premieres.

The hugely exciting announcement adds further shape to a season set to include Olivia Colman, Imelda Staunton, Andrew Garfield, Denise Gough, Philip Quast, Nathan Lane, James McArdle, Janie Dee, Daniel Rigby, Tamara Lawrence, Susan Brown, Doon Mackichan, Daniel Ezra and Olwen Fouere in leading roles.

New work has been announced by Inua Ellams, Yaёl Farber, DC Moore, Lindsey Ferrentino and Nina Raine, while NT Live announcements include Amadeus on 2 February 2017, Saint Joan on 16 February and Hedda Gabler on 9 March, following the live broadcast of No Man’s Land on 15 December of this year.

Stephen Sondheim’s Follies will arrive at the National Theatre for the first time in 2017, led by multi-Olivier Award winner Imelda Staunton. Directed by NT Associate Director Dominic Cooke, and with a supporting cast including Janie Dee and Philip Quast, the moving story of a discordant reunion finds a new home in the Olivier Theatre.

Yaёl Farber, whose production of Les Blancs earlier this year drew widespread critical acclaim, will direct her new adaptation of Salomé, a radical revision of the biblical canon, in its European premiere in the Olivier Theatre in May, with casting including Olwen Fouere, while the venue will also host a world premiere in the shape of industrial revolution epic play Common, penned by DC Moore and led by Headlong Artistic Director Jeremy Herrin in a co-production with the esteemed company.

As previously announced, the NT’s largest venue will welcome Tamsin Greig, Daniel Rigby, Tamara Lawrence, Doon Mackichan and Daniel Ezra to play Malvolia, Aguecheek, Viola, Feste and Sebastian respectively in Twelfth Night from February, the first of two Shakespearean productions led by Simon Godwin, who will later direct Ralph Fiennes in Antony And Cleopatra in 2018.

The Lyttelton Theatre will see Lindsey Ferrentino’s war drama Ugly Lies The Bone make its European premiere at the NT in March, with direction from Indhu Rubasingham and a set designed by Es Devlin. Having suffered serious injury on tour, an American soldier evades her pain through virtual reality video game therapy.

This will be followed by the eagerly anticipated production of Tony Kushner’s Angels In America, with a cast including Andrew Garfield as Prior Walter, as well as Susan Brown, Nathan Lane, Denise Gough, Russell Tovey, James McArdle and Nathan Stewart-Jarrett. Having received its British premiere as a double-bill at the NT in 1993, director Marianne Elliott will revive this seminal examination of AIDs and homosexuality with an all-star company.  

Finally, the Dorfman Theatre will play host to verbatim project My Country; A Work In Progress, a show crafted by Rufus Norris and Carol Ann Duffy from the results of a national listening project in the days after the European Referendum, while a co-production with Out Of Joint will see Consent, a play questioning law and justice by Nina Raine, receive its world premiere in April.

Rising star Lucy Kirkwood’s new play Mosquitoes, about families and particle physics, will be directed by Rufus Norris in its July world premiere, with a cast including celebrated actress Olivia Colman.

This is preceded at the venue by Dublin Oldschool, a new play about brothers, Dublin and dance, and Us/Them, an acclaimed play from one of Belgium’s leading theatres for young audiences, BRONKS, in January; Lost Without Words, an improvised theatrical experiment utilising older actors with swathes of stage experience, in March; and Inua Ellams’ Barber Shop Chronicles, a new play about barber shops across Africa and the UK, in June.

With such an exciting line-up in store for the new year, the National Theatre can also celebrate the international successes of current productions of The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time in London, America and across the UK, as well as forthcoming tours of Jane Eyre and the acclaimed production War Horse.

From February 2017, the NT will stage contemporary retellings of Shakespeare for younger audiences, complementing its Learning Programme and youth theatre initiative.