Helen McCrory portrays the legendary figure of Hester Collyer in Terence Rattigan’s devastating masterpiece The Deep Blue Sea, unravelling an amorous but scandalous trail of deceit, loneliness and long-repressed furtive passion.

Hester Collyer is found in the immediate aftermath of a failed suicide attempt in her Ladbroke Grove, West London, 1952 flat.

What soon emerges is the story of her secretive entanglement with a mercurial former RAF pilot and the subsequent breakdown of her marriage to a High Court judge, unveiling a brutal portrait of a wounded and longing figure shrouded by the fragile veneer of post-war civility. 

Following immense critical acclaim for McCrory’s 2014 performance as Medea under the direction of Carrie Cracknell, the duo now reunite at the National Theatre Lyttelton to tell the tempestuous tale of another of the greatest female roles in contemporary theatre.

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