This August continues to be slow for theatre (after all, we have all been focusing on other exciting events), but casting and other news are hotting up. Here is what caught my eye this past week:
- Rumour is the National Theatre’s Christmas show at the Olivier will be Arthur Wing Pinero’s The Magistrate, starring Nancy Carroll and John Lithgow. Farce plus one of my favourite actresses, roll on Christmas. (It will replace the previously announced, and then cancelled, production of The Count of Monte Christo). Update 18/11/2012: Having seen one of the early previews of the production, you can read my review here.
- Director Jamie Lloyd launches his own production company in association with the Ambassador Theatre Group. The announcement of this new commercial theatre venture comes not long after Michael Grandage announced his West End season of five plays chock full of big names (Simon Russell Beale, Ben Whishaw, Judi Dench, Daniel Radcliffe). Although my wallet undoubtedly suffers when I have to pay West End prices, it’s healthy to have commercial theatre that feels exciting.
- A couple of years ago, the Royal Shakespeare Company produced and toured Ben Power’s play A Tender Thing, a new way of looking at the story of Romeo and Juliet. I was sad to miss it then, but the play returns at the RSC this autumn, this time with two of my favourite actors, Richard McCabe and Kathryn Hunter. Not missing it this time.