Catherine Love has once again delved into the theatrical offerings that are tempting us into the theatre this week. From a Pulitzer Prize-winning play that delves into the bond of family, to a new verbatim play from the acclaimed writer behind The National Theatre’s surprising hit London Road, Alecky Blythe. David Eldridge continues his growing relationship with The Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester with a new adaptation of a Strindberg classic, while in Plymouth Ontroerend Goed are perhaps causing a little bit of a stir with their new piece and finally rounding up the week over in Wales is a new piece exploring just what happened to Bradley Manning.
Following his celebrated performance in All My Sons, David Suchet turns his hand to another of the great classics of twentieth century American drama in Eugene O’Neill’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play. As the title would suggest, the drama follows the events of one eventful day and night in the lives of the troubled Tyrone family as they confront their pasts and one another. This revival also stars Laurie Metcalf and rising star Kyle Soller.
Runs until 18th August
Strindberg’s passionate exploration of sexuality and class is given yet another incarnation in a new version by playwright David Eldridge at the Royal Exchange Theatre, directed by Sarah Frankcom. Maxine Peake takes on the rôle of impetuous Count’s daughter Julie, who descends into the servants’ quarters of her father’s home on midsummer night and initiates a dangerous, erotic game of cat and mouse with footman Jean.
Runs 11th April – 12th May
Following the success of London Road, which is due to return to the National Theatre later this year, verbatim virtuoso Alecky Blythe’s latest piece opens in the area that has been integral to this piece of documentary work. Her portrait of the hopes and dreams of the inhabitants of North Staffordshire, told in the words of the locals, examines the difficulties of having ambition in a recession-gripped world and the public fixation with that much-desired 15 minutes of fame.
Runs until 28th April
This extraordinary piece of theatre claims to do exactly what it says on the tin, whisking audiences right from the present day back to the Big Bang in just one evening, but considering that it’s orchestrated by the unique and often controversial Ontroerend Goed, it’s unlikely to be that simple. Drawing on evolutionary theory and cosmology, this looks to be a truly epic attempt to grasp something impossibly huge.
Runs 12th – 28th April
The latest, characteristically ambitious project from National Theatre Wales is an investigation into the life of Bradley Manning and how he went from being an ordinary teenager in west Wales to a soldier accused of leaking US military secrets and facing a life in prison. Asking questions about how this happened and who is responsible, this new piece is written by Tim Price and directed by John E McGrath.