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Triumphant return for award-winning Jerusalem

First Published 11 July 2011, Last Updated 11 July 2011

Jez Butterworth’s multi-award-winning tale of modern rural life, Jerusalem, is to return to the West End this autumn with its central casting of Mark Rylance and Mackenzie Crook intact.

The show, which was originally staged at the Royal Court in 2009 before transferring to the West End in 2010 and subsequently heading to Broadway, has won universal acclaim from critics and the public alike. Rylance’s central performance as charismatic ne’er-do-well Johnny Byron has been heralded as one of the greatest stage outings of recent years. It returns to London to play at the Apollo theatre from 8 October to 14 January.

Set on St George’s Day, the action revolves around Byron, who is a wanted man; council officials want to evict him, his son wants his dad to take him to the county fair and his mates just want access to his copious amount of drugs and alcohol.

Described by the Daily Express as a “riveting hymn to England” and the Daily Telegraph as an “instant modern classic”, Jerusalem won a host of Best Play awards when it premiered, missing out at the Oliviers to The Mountaintop and at the Tonys to War Horse. Though the play was unlucky at the most high profile award ceremonies, Rylance was not, collecting Best Actor awards at both.

Rylance, the former Artistic Director of Shakespeare’s Globe, is widely considered to be one of the finest stage performers of his generation, with recent credits including Boeing Boeing and La Bête. Crook is best known for his roles in cult TV comedy The Office and in the Pirates Of The Caribbean films.

Jerusalem’s run at the Apollo is preceded by another show returning to the West End, Yes, Prime Minister. The comedy, written by Antony Jay and Jonathan Lynn who created the original TV series, runs until 17 September.

MA

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