The National Theatre’s 13 is a world premiere by Olivier Award-winning playwright Mike Bartlett.

Morning in London, autumn 2011. Across the city, people wake up from an identical, terrifying dream. At the same moment, a young man named John returns home after years away to find economic gloom, ineffective protest and a Prime Minister about to declare war.

But John has a vision for the future and his ideas inspire an increasing number of followers. With conflict looming in the Middle-East, their protest takes them to the centre of the city, to the heart of government, where coincidences, omens and visions collide with political reality.

From the writer of Earthquakes In London and the award-winning Cock, comes an epic new play. Set in a dark and magical landscape of singing pensioners, fanatical atheists and imminent apocalypse, it depicts a London both familiar and strange, a London staring into the void. In a year which has seen governments fall and hundreds of thousands take to the streets, 13 explores the meaning of personal responsibility, the hold that the past has over the future and the nature of belief itself.

13 is directed by Thea Sharrock. Sharrock directed last year’s Olivier Award-winning After The Dance at the National Theatre. Her other credits include Cause Célèbre at the Old Vic theatre and The Misanthrope in the West End.

For more about 13 at the National Theatre read the First Night Feature.

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