Interview: Director Sam Pritchard on Pygmalion, regional theatre, ketchup and more

Sam Pritchard
Sam Pritchard

Sam Pritchard

I had a chat with Sam Pritchard. Sam is the very bold Associate Director (International) at the Royal Court and was winner of the JMK Award for Directors in 2012. His credits include Anna (Aix Opera Festival/ENOA Workshop), There Has Possibly Been An Incident (Royal Exchange and Edinburgh St Stephens/Soho Theatre/Berlin Theatertreffen), Buy Nothing Day (Company of Angels), Fireface (Young Vic) and Galka Motalka (Royal Exchange). He will be directing Guillermo Calderon’s play B for the Royal Court in September 2017.

He has directed a radical new staging of Bernard Shaw’s acute comedy Pygmalion for Headlong, a poignant tale of two opposites, Henry Higgins and Eliza Doolittle, trying to find a common language.

Anyway, last week many thought I had lost my mind when I ran a twitter poll asking: ‘Do you keep your ketchup in the fridge?’ * See photo below*

Ketchup Poll

Ketchup Poll

In fact it was an elaborate way of enriching this ‘content’. So there you go.
But does Sam keep his ketchup in the fridge? Well…

Have you had a good week? 
“Good – It’s been pretty busy – I have a full-time job which is as an associate at the Royal Court –  I work mostly with international playwrights there isn’t really and average week – so much of our work here or with playwrights is about working on the development of their work, listening to them and discussing work that we have received. I’m currently in Bath and looking forward to catching up with the cast and team – I have never been to Bath, I know it has a classic proscenium-arch and I’ve heard is a brilliant space.”


Pygmalion. Click on the image to book your tickets for Pygmalion

Do you read the Pygmalion Reviews? Some were quite good weren’t they. 
“I do read some of the reviews – I think there is an interesting thing that comes with Headlong as a touring company that a show gets engaged with at different points in different places. And I think the company have certainly found that to be the case, that different audiences across the country have had really different experiences. For me the aim has been to respond to the impulse I had in my first engagement with the play, when I first sat down to read it. It felt like a really radical piece of work. Much more so than we usually think. I thought about its relationship to us now. It’s an extraordinarily front footed and in some ways populist piece of writing about class and identity in Britain – I think that’s what Shaw wrote. Our response isn’t traditional but it flows from that.”

How important are your relationships with the creative team? 
I think all of those creative relationships are entirely crucial whether that’s with set and costume designer or lighting and video designer; in the case of this show a cinematographer or sound designer. Those relationships were key in terms of growing the world and aesthetic from that initial impulse into the show that we all made together. This is a play about language, how we hear, see and feel it and all of those design elements needed to deliver that.”

You were the winner of the JMK Award for Directors in 2012, how helpful was that in terms of your career trajectory?
“The extraordinary thing about that process and the opportunity it offers is being able to make a piece of work that you’re passionate about. It’s not about working on other peoples’ shows or developing your practice in a theoretical way. It’s about doing the actual thing itself. Which is invaluable.”

Do you see regional theatre as something that is in decline? 
“As someone who lives in London I feel totally underqualified to comment on the state of regional theatre. I lived and worked in Manchester at the Royal Exchange for three years at the beginning of my career. And my experience of that theatre and city has always been that there is a thriving and distinctive and different theatre ecology there. Our experience with Pygmalion has been really positive. Shaw feels like a very audience facing artist. He’s up for a conversation, an argument and a debate with his audience and the play is a brilliant mixture of the comic and the darkly political. It feels to me as though audiences have really engaged with that across the tour.”


How have audiences responsed to Pygmalion across the country? 
One of the interesting things we set out to do with this show was to try to engage with our contemporary political life through a classic play. We’re really comfortable with the reinvention of classic European and American plays in this country now. But our own canon hasn’t been re-examined in quite the same way. It felt like this was a brilliant opportunity to do that – with a writer who has much more that’s radical to say about inequality and the way language and culture contribute to that divide. And from my experience of watching the show, it’s been interesting to see audiences engage with that. To find some of this story much more disturbing to a contemporary ear than it is funny.

Anything that you’d like to add? For example – Do you keep your ketchup in the fridge etc, etc, and so on. 
“Wow… You saved your most incisive question for last. Yes. Well, I think I do because it was kept in the fridge when I was a child. I will re-examine my decision. Hm.”

Pygmalion by Headlong is on tour and hits Oxford Playhouse from Tue 18 to Sat 22 April 2017It then makes its way to NTS Campus, Nuffield Southampton Theatres from Tue 25 April to Sat 13 May 2017.
Tickets: Oxford

Tickets: Southampton

023 8067 1771

Royal Court Theatre announce cast for Nuclear War, text by Simon Stephens, directed by Imogen Knight

Maureen Beattie, Sharon Duncan-Brewster, Gerrome Miller, Beatrice Scirocchi and Andrew Sheridan have been cast in Simon Stephens’ Nuclear War directed by Imogen Knight. It runs in the Royal Court Jerwood Theatre Upstairs 19 April 2017 – 6 May 2017 with Press Night on Friday 21 April.

With design by Royal Court Associate Designer Chloe Lamford, lighting by Lee Curran, sound by Peter Rice and composition by Elizabeth Bernholz.

Nuclear War is a play created with a highly visual and physical language. Simon Stephens states on the play text that; ‘All of these words may be spoken by the performers but none of them need to be.’

Stephens has written this play with the intention that the words be interpreted and re-imagined through a highly theatrical and choreographic lens. Nuclear War will be an alternative theatrical experience about a woman, a city, desire and time.

Simon Stephens (Writer)

For the Royal Court: Birdland, Wastwater, Bluebird, Herons, Country Music, Motortown. Other theatre includes: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (National/West End/Broadway); Port (Royal Exchange, Manchester/National); Rage (Thalia, Hamburg); Blindsided, On The Shore of the Wide World (Royal Exchange, Manchester); Carmen Disruption (Deutsches Schauspielhaus, Hamburg/Almeida); Harper Regan (National); Sea Wall (Bush); Pornography (Deutsches Schauspielhaus, Hamburg/Traverse/Birmingham Rep/Tricycle); Punk Rock (Lyric, Hammersmith/Royal Exchange, Manchester); A Doll’s House (& West End), The Cherry Orchard, Songs From Faraway, I Am The Wind (Young Vic); Three Kingdoms (Lyric, Hammersmith/Tallinnand, Munich); Morning (Lyric); Heisenberg (MTC, New York); The Funfair (Home).

Radio includes: Fiver Letters Home to Elizabeth, Digging.

Film includes: Dive, Pornography, Cargese.

Awards include: Tony Award for Best Play, Olivier Award for Best New Play (The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time); Theater Heute’s Award (Motortown, Pornography, Wastwater); Manchester Evening News Award for Best Production (Punk Rock); Olivier Award for Best New Play (On The Shore of the Wide World); Pearson Award for Best Play (Port).

Simon is Artistic Associate at the Lyric, Hammersmith and Associate Playwright at the Royal Court. He was also on the board for Paines Plough between 2009 and 2014, and was a writers’ tutor for the Young Writers’ Programme at the Royal Court between 2001 and 2005.

Imogen Knight (Director)

As Movement Director for the Royal Court: Linda, God Bless the Child, The Low Road, A Time To Reap, Love, Love, Love (& Paines Plough), Pests (& Clean Break/Royal Exchange, Manchester/UK Tour). 

Other theatre includes: Amadeus, The Threepenny Opera, Les Blancs, I Want My Hat Back, Edward II, Dido, Queen Of Carthage (National); The Emperor, Measure For Measure, Dirty Butterfly (Young Vic); Our Ladies Of Perpertual Succour (National Theatre of Scotland, National/UK tour); Red Velvet (Tricycle/West End/St Ann’s Warehouse, New York); Five Finger Exercise (Print Room);  The Skriker (Manchester International Festival/Royal Exchange, Manchester); Carmen Disruption, Little Revolution, Turn of the Screw, King Lear, Filumena, Measure For Measure, When The Rain Stops Falling (Almeida); Hamlet, Blindsided, Cannibals (Royal Exchange, Manchester); In Time O’ Strife, An Appointment with the Wicker Man, The Missing (National Theatre of Scotland);  The Broken Heart, ’Tis Pity She’s A Whore (Globe);  The Crucible (Old Vic);  Arden Of Faversham (RSC); Of Mice & Men, As You LIke It (West Yorkshire Playhouse);  The History Boys, Macbeth (Crucible, Sheffield); Under the Carpet (De Stilte, Holland); OMG! (Sadler’s Wells/Company of Angels/The Place); Penelope (Dramaturgs, Network/Company of Angels); But I Cd Only Whisper, When Five Years Pass (Arcola); One Day When We Were Young, The Sound Of Heavy Rain (Paines Plough);  The Tempest (Watermill); Persuasion (Salisbury Playhouse); Corrie (Lowry/UK Tour); The Snow Queen (Chichester Festival); The Boiler Room (Clean Break); A Doll’s House (Exeter Northcott Theatre); Wuthering Heights (Birmingham Rep); Success (National with Islington Youth Theatre).

Opera includes: Powder Her Face (ENO); Let’s Make an Opera, The Little Sweep (Malmo Opera).

Television includes: Harlots, Call the Midwife, The Hollow Crown. 

Film includes: On Chesil Beach, My Name Is Ruthie Segal, Hear Me Roar.

Imogen is choreographer for filmmaker and animator Jasmin Jordy and has choreographed commercials for Age UK and Childline. Imogen is a visiting lecturer at Central School of Speech and Drama and acted as a mentor, on behalf of Old Vic New Voices, for the young company Snuff Box Theatre on their acclaimed production Bitch Boxer. Imogen has been commissioned to create performance installations for The British Library and Curious Lab – Barbican 2016. 

Maureen Beattie (Cast)

For the Royal Court: No Quarter, Waiting Room Germany.

Theatre includes: Yerma, The Skin of Our Teeth (Young Vic); The Winter’s Tale, The Cherry Orchard (Royal Lyceum, Edinburgh); Right Now (Ustinov, Bath/Bush/Traverse); John Gabriel Barclay (Òran Mór); The Jennifer Tremblay Trilogy (Stellar Quines/Edinburgh Festival Fringe); Romeo & Juliet (Rose, Kingston); Noises Off (Old Vic/UK tour); Enquirer, 27, Yer Granny (National Theatre of Scotland); The Master Builder (Minerva, Chichester); The Merry Wives of Windsor, Othello (National); This Wide Night (Soho/Clean Break); Ghosts, Acting Up (Citizens); The Histories, Richard III, Titus Andronicus, The Man Who Came To Dinner, Mary & Lizzie, King Lear, Macbeth, The Constant Couple (RSC); Medea (Theatre Babel/Edinburgh Festival Fringe); Rebecca (UK tour); Small Change (Crucible, Sheffield); The Deep Blue Sea (Playhouse, Nottingham); Candida (Plymouth/Playhouse, Salisbury); Hard to Get, The Widows of Clyth (Traverse).

Film includes: Spores, The List, The Decoy Bride.

Television includes: Outlander, Doctor Who, Vera, Moving On, Midsomer Murders, Doctors, Lewis, The Worst Week of My Life, A Wing & A Prayer, Ruffian Hearts, Taggart, The Long Roads, Bramwell, All Night Long, The Chief, Casualty.

Sharon Duncan-Brewster (Cast)

For the Royal Court: Hope, Yard Gal (& Clean Break), Babies.

Other theatre includes: trade (Young Vic); A Streetcar Named Desire, So Special (Royal Exchange, Manchester); The Iphigenia Quartet, Yerma (Gate); Swallow (Traverse); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Liverpool Everyman); The El Train (Hoxton Hall); A Few Man Friday’s (Riverside Studios); The Swan, There is a War (National); Tiger Country, Keepers (Hampstead); Detaining Justice, Seize the Day, Category B, Let There Be Love, Playboy of the West Indies (Tricycle); The Horse Marines (Theatre Royal, Plymouth); The Bacchae (National Theatre of Scotland); Black Crows (Clean Break/Arcola); The Magic Carpet (Lyric, Hammersmith); Blues for Mr Charlie (Talawa/Tricycle/New Wolsey); Dirty Butterfly (Soho); Peepshow (Frantic Assembly/Plymouth/Lyric, Hammersmith); Crave (Paines Plough); The No Boys Cricket Club (Theatre Royal Stratford East).

Television includes: Going Forward, Unforgotten, Cuffs, Cucumber, The Mimic, The Bible, Top Boy, Holby City, EastEnders, Shoot the Messenger, Doctors, Waking the Dead, Babyfather, Bad Girls, Casualty, Body Story, The Bill.

Film includes: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Three & Out.

Radio includes: The FBI’s Most Wanted Woman.

Opera includes: Gaddafi (ENO).

 Gerrome Miller (Cast)

Theatre includes: Something Inside So Strong (Arcola); Children of Killers (NT Connections/Orange Tree).

Film includes: Deep it.

Beatrice Scirocchi (Cast)

Theatre includes: Home (Arcola); The Skriker (Royal Exchange, Manchester); Run, Missing (Engineer Theatre Collective); The Mystae (Hampstead).

Andrew Sheridan (Cast)

Theatre includes: By Far the Greatest Team (Monkeywood); The Skriker, Blindsided, Being Friends, Antigone, Jonah & Otto, The Rise & Fall of Little Voice, Across Oka, Port, The Ribcage (Royal Exchange, Manchester); A Breakfast of Eels (Print Room); Henry VI (Globe); The Roundabout Season (& National), One Day When We Were Young, The Sound of Heavy Rain, (Paines Plough); Expectations (Gest); A Thousand Stars Explode in the Sky (Lyric, Hammersmith); Holes in the Skin (Chichester Festival); Skinned (Nuffield).

Television includes: No Offence, Scott & Bailey, The Trials of Jimmy Rose, Peaky Blinders, Homefront, Heartbeat, Kingdom, Cold Blood, Coronation Street, New Street Law, Shameless, Buried, Night Flight, Urban Gothic, Clocking Off.

Film includes: Steven, Control.

The Royal Court announces new play Bodies by Vivienne Franzmann, dates for B & Victory Condition and addition of extra performances for Nuclear War

Royal Court Theatre

Vivienne Franzmann returns to the Royal Court Theatre with BODIES, directed by Jude Christian premiering in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs, Wednesday 05 July 2017 – Saturday 12 August 2017

Tickets on sale for B by Chilean playwright Guillermo Calderón translated by William Gregory and directed by Royal Court Associate Director (International) Sam Pritchard (Jerwood Theatre Downstairs, Thursday 28 September 2017 – Saturday 21 October 2017) and VICTORY CONDITION by Chris Thorpe directed by Royal Court Artistic Director Vicky Featherstone (Jerwood Theatre Downstairs, Thursday 05 October 2017 – Saturday 21 October 2017). These plays will run alongside one another in nightly rep, making it possible for the Royal Court to programme more work and offer flexible performance times.

Extra shows added for the sold out run of Royal Court Associate Playwright Simon Stephens’ NUCLEAR WAR directed by Imogen Knight at the Royal Court Jerwood Theatre Upstairs, Wednesday 19 April 2017 – Saturday 6 May 2017

Tickets go on sale to the general public at 10am on Wednesday 22 February 2017 020 7565 5000 /

By Vivienne Franzmann
Directed by Jude Christian
Jerwood Theatre Upstairs Royal Court Theatre,
Wednesday 05 July 2017 – Saturday 12 August 2017

Following Pests Vivienne Franzmann returns to the Royal Court Theatre with her new play Bodies. Directed by Jude Christian, Bodies will run in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs from Wednesday 05 July 2017 – Saturday 12 August 2017 with press night on Tuesday 11 July, 7pm

“We should have brought a gift”
“We’ve brought a gift. It’s called 22 thousand pounds.”
Purchased from Russia. Developed in India. Delivered to the UK.
A global transaction over nine months that offers ‘a lifetime of happiness’ to all involved.

“What do you think will happen to a baby girl in India that nobody wants?”

With Design by Gabriella Slade.

Nuclear War 
Text by Simon Stephens
Directed by Imogen Knight

Jerwood Theatre Upstairs
Wednesday 19 April 2017 – Saturday 6 May 2017.

Extra shows added for sold out show Nuclear War by Simon Stephens. Performances have been added at 9.15pm on 22, 24, 25, 26 and 28 April and 2, 3 and 5 May 2017.

“I want, one more time, to be absolutely in the moment.”
A series of suggestions on desire, death and time.
“I am going to try as hard as I can to not be a human being.”
Royal Court Associate Playwright Simon Stephens returns to the Royal Court with Nuclear War directed by Imogen Knight. Nuclear War will run in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs from Wednesday 19 April 2017 – Saturday 6 May 2017, with press night on Friday 21 April 2017, 7pm.
Designed by Royal Court Associate Designer Chloe Lamford, sound design by Peter Rice and lighting by Lee Curran.
Nuclear War was developed by Actors Touring Company.

International Playwrights: A Genesis Foundation Project
Written by Guillermo Calderón
Translated by William Gregory
Directed by Sam Pritchard
Jerwood Theatre Downstairs
Thursday 28 September 2017 – Saturday 21 October 2017

Tickets are now on sale for previously announced by Chilean playwright Guillermo Calderón.
“But don’t say that word.”
“What word?”
“The word that starts with B.”
Alejandra and Marcela are planting bombs in the middle of the night.
They don’t want violence. They just want to be heard. Prison’s not much of a threat when most of your friends are inside.
But José Miguel is from another generation, and he’s committed to change by any means possible.
‘We used to kill kings. We used to kill millionaires. And now all we do is make threats on the Internet. That’s why I’m offering you the chance to start a war.’
Acclaimed Chilean playwright Guillermo Calderón makes his Royal Court debut with the world premiere of his play B, written on a residency with the International Department. is presented as part of International Playwrights: a Genesis Foundation Project. It will be directed by Royal Court Associate Director (International) Sam Pritchard in the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs. It will run Thursday 28 September 2017 – Saturday 21 October 2017 with press nights on Saturday 7pm Saturday 30 September or 7pm Monday 2 October(embargoed until 10pm Monday 2 October).
Designed by Royal Court Associate Designer Chloe Lamford.
will run alongside Victory Condition in nightly rep. These plays will run alongside one another in nightly rep, making it possible for the Royal Court to programme more work and offer flexible performance times.
Casting to be announced.

Royal Court Theatre’s critically acclaimed sell-out production of Escaped Alone visits Bristol Old Vic this March

Escaped Alone
  • Original cast, including award-winning actors Linda Bassett, Deborah Findlay, Kika Markham and June Watson confirmed
  • Escaped Alone wins Best Play at the Writers’ Guild Awards 2017
Escaped Alone

Escaped Alone

Following sell-out runs at the Royal Court Theatre in 2016 and this February, Caryl Churchill’s Escaped Alone will visit to Bristol Old Vic between 22 – 26 March for a strictly limited run, fresh from a New York transfer.

As short, sharp and “revolutionary” (5* Susannah Clapp, Observer) as we have come to expect from seminal playwright Caryl Churchill, Escaped Alone is “Churchill at her best” (4* Michael Billington, Guardian); in fact “it’s hard to imagine you’ll come across a more brilliant play this year” (5* Andrzej Lukowski, Time Out).

Caryl Churchill’s Escaped Alone was first staged at the Royal Court in January 2016 and received critical and public acclaim. Original cast members Linda Bassett, Deborah Findlay, Kika Markham and June Watson, as well as the original creative team, return for the 2017 production.

“I’m walking down the street and there’s a door in the fence open and inside there are three women I’ve seen before.” Three old friends and a neighbour. A summer of afternoons in the back yard. Tea and catastrophe.

Tickets are selling fast for the Bristol Old Vic run of this award-winning play, visiting the Theatre between 22 – 26 March.

Royal Court Theatre Casting Announcement : a profoundly affectionate, passionate devotion to someone (-noun) by debbie tucker green

Cast of a profoundly affectionate, passionate devotion to someone (-noun)
Cast of a profoundly affectionate, passionate devotion to someone (-noun)

Cast of a profoundly affectionate, passionate devotion to someone (-noun)

The Royal Court Theatre has announced that Gary Beadle, Gershwyn Eustache Jnr, Lashana Lynch, Shvorne Marks and Meera Syal have been cast in new play a profoundly affectionate, passionate devotion to someone (-noun) written and directed by debbie tucker green. It runs in the Royal Court Jerwood Theatre Upstairs from Tuesday 28 February 2017 to Saturday 1 April 2017 with Press Night on Monday 6 March 2017.

With set design by Merle Hensel, lighting design by Lee Curran, sound design by Christopher Shutt and movement by Vicki Manderson.

‘It’s not always all about you.’

Three couples.
What might be.
What once was.
What could have been.

debbie tucker green returns to the Royal Court following hang which ran in the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs in 2015.

Press Night: 

Monday 6 March, 7pma profoundly affectionate, passionate devotion to someone (-noun)Jerwood Theatre Upstairs


debbie tucker green (writer/director)

For the Royal Court: hang, truth & reconciliation, random, stoning mary.

Other theatre includes: nut (National); generations (Young Vic); trade (RSC/RSC at Soho); born bad (Hampstead); dirty butterfly (Soho).

Film includes: second coming, random.

Radio includes: lament, gone, random, handprint, freefall.

Directing includes: nut, hang, truth & reconciliation, random (theatre); second coming, random (film); lament, gone, random (radio). 

Awards include: Radio Academy Arias Gold Award (lament); International Film Festival Rotterdam Big Screen Award (second coming); BAFTA for Best Single Drama (random); Black International Film Award for Best UK Film (random); OBIE Award Special Citation (born bad); Olivier Award for Most Promising Newcomer (born bad).

Gary Beadle (Man)

For the Royal Court: Sucker Punch, God’s Second In Command.

Other theatre includes: Now We Are Here (Young Vic); Les Blancs, Black Poppies (National); Hapgood (Hampstead); The Whipping Man (Theatre Royal, Plymouth); The Rise & Shine of Comrade Fiasco (Gate); Skipping Rope, You Know Who You Are (Talawa), Banksy: The Room in the Elephant (Tobacco Factory/Edinburgh Festival Fringe/UK tour); Blue Remembered Hills (Chichester Festival); Family Man, Alterations (Theatre Royal Stratford East); Top Dog/Under Dog (Crucible, Sheffield); The Memory of Water (Watford Palace); Generations of the Dead in the Abyss of Coney Island Madness (Contact); Ticker Tape & V Signs (7:84); Welcome Home Jacko (BTC, New York); Moby Dick (Royal Exchange, Manchester); Club Mix (Riverside Studios).

Television includes: Silent Witness, Grantchester, Death In Paradise, The Interceptor, Doctors, Common Ground, Crime Stories, Hustle, Casualty, Kerrching, Little Britain, Holby City, EastEnders, Family Affairs, The Bill, Absolutely Fabulous, Born to Run, Glam Metal Detectives, Shall I Be Mother, Murphy’s Mob, The Lenny Henry Show, Honeymoon, Just Like Mohicans, Club Mix, Radical Chambers, I Love Keith Allen, Making Out, Crying Game, Wail of the Banshee, Space Virgins From Planet Sex Queen of the Wild, The Detectives.

Film includes: In the Heart of the Sea, Cockneys vs Zombies, ‘Til Death Us Do Part, Wit, The Imitators, Driven, Memoirs of a Survivor, Fords on Water, Absolute Beginners, Playing Away, Cresta Run, White Mischief.

Gershwyn Eustache Jnr (B)

Theatre includes: The Royale (Bush); The Comedy of Errors, Macbeth on Film (Globe); Home, nut (National); Romeo & Juliet (Custom Practice/UK tour). 
Television includes: Britannia, Fortitude, Legends, Peter Pan, Run, New Worlds.
Film includes: The Yellow Birds, Second Coming, Starred Up. 

Lashana Lynch (A)

Theatre includes: Educating Rita (Chichester Festival); Dog Days (503); Roadkill (Pachamama); Romeo & Juliet (National); Slave (Lowry); Some Like It Hip Hop (ZooNation/Sadler’s Wells); 
Television includes: Still Star Crossed, Death in Paradise, Doctors, Crims, Atlantis, Top Coppers, The 7:39, Silent Witness, The Bill.
Film includes: Brotherhood, Fast Girls, Powder Room.

Shvorne Marks (Young Woman)

Theatre includes: Deny Deny Deny (Park); House (Clean Break/Yard); The Brink, Macbeth (Orange Tree); Flare Path (UK tour); The Witch of Edmonton (RSC); Some Other Mother (Traverse/Tron); Home (The Last Refuge); Trust Fund (Bush); Seasoned (Tobacco Factory).
Television includes: Endeavour, Holby City.
Radio includes: Assata Shakur.

Meera Syal (Woman)

For the Royal Court: If You Don’t Let Us Dream We Won’t Let You Sleep, Serious Money (& West End/Broadway), The Great Celestial Cow, Minor Complications, True Dare Kiss, Byrthrite.

Other theatre includes: Romeo & Juliet (Kenneth Branagh/West End); Behind the Beautiful Forevers, Rafta Rafta, Peer Gynt (National); Much Ado About Nothing (RSC); The Killing of Sister George (Arts); Shirley Valentine (Menier/Trafalgar); Bombay Dreams (Really Useful/West End); The Vagina Monologues (Old Vic/West End/Broadway); One of Us (Edinburgh International Festival/Off-Broadway); Kissing God (Hampstead); Blood Wedding (Half Moon & UK Tour); The School for Scandal (Bristol Old Vic); Kirti Sona & Ba (Haymarket, Leicester); My Girl (Theatre Royal Stratford East); Goodness Gracious Me (UK tour).

Television includes: Riviera, Walliams & Friends, The Musketeers, Midsomer Murders, Broadchurch, The Brink, The Boy in the Dress, Psychobitches, The Job Lot, The Kumars at No. 42, Crackanory, Silk, Bollywood Carmen, Family Tree, Hunted, Mr Swallow, The Jury, Doctor Who, Little Crackers, Jekyll, The Amazing Mrs Pritchard, The Secretary Who Stole £4 Million, Life Isn’t All Ha Ha Hee Hee, Goodness Gracious Me, Who Do You Think You Are?, Linda Green, Fat Friends, Mrs Bradley Mysteries, Absolutely Fabulous, Sean’s Show, Jo Brand’s Through the Cakehole, My Sister Wife, Crossing the Floor, The Real McCoy, Kinsey, A Little Princess, Secret Diary of Adrian Mole.

Film includes: Murder on the Orient Express, Paddington 2, The Nutcracker & the Four Realms, Dr Strange, Alice Through the Looking Glass, Absolutely Anything, All in Good Time, You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger, Desert Flower, Mad Sad & Bad, Jhoom Barabar Jhoom, Scoop, Anita & Me, Girls Night, Beautiful Thing, It’s Not Unusual, A Nice Arrangement, Sammy & Rosie Get Laid.

Radio includes: Small Town Murder, Bindi Business, Everyday Story of Afghan Folk, Leaving Normal, Kipling in Love, Verse Universe, Ladies Excuse Me, Poetry Please, Wicked Words, Morning Story, Book At Bedtime, Pankhiraj, Goodness Gracious Me.

Awards include: WhatsOnStage Award for Best Solo Performance (Shirley Valentine)

Listings Information:

a profoundly affectionate, passionate devotion to someone (-noun)
Written and directed by debbie tucker green
Jerwood Theatre Upstairs, Royal Court Theatre, Sloane Square, SW1W 8AS
Tuesday 28 February 2017– Saturday 1 April 2017

Monday – Saturday 7.45pm
Thursday & Saturday matinees 3pm (from 9 March)

Captioned Performance 28 March, 7.45pm

Press Night 6 March, 7pm

Age Guidance 14+ Contains strong language

Tickets £25 (Mondays all seats £12 available from 9am online on the day of performance

Concessions* From £15 (available in advance for previews and all matinees)

Access £15 (plus a companion at the same rate)

*ID required. All discounts subject to availability.


Royal Court Theatre casting announcement for The Kid Stays In The Picture

Cast of The Kid Stays in the Picture
Cast of The Kid Stays in the Picture

Cast of The Kid Stays in the Picture

Thomas Arnold, Heather Burns, Max Casella, Clint Dyer, Danny Huston, Ajay Naidu and Madeleine Potter have been cast in new play The Kid Stays in the Picture which is based on the life of Robert Evans adapted from his memoir. It runs in the Royal Court Jerwood Theatre Downstairs from Tuesday 7 March 2017 – Saturday 8 April 2017 with Press Night on Wednesday 15 March 2017.

Directed by Simon McBurney and adapted by Simon McBurney and James Yeatman. Co-Director James Yeatman with set design by Anna Fleischle, costume design by Christina Cunningham, video design by Simon Wainwright, lighting design by Paul Anderson and sound design by Pete Malkin.

“There are three sides to every story: my side, your side, and the truth. And no one is lying. Memories shared serve each one differently.”

In the 1960s and 70s, Robert Evans became one of the most powerful figures in Hollywood. He saved Paramount Pictures from collapse and produced films including The Godfather and Chinatown.

By the 1980s he was broke, with his personal and professional life spiralling at epic proportions. In 1994 he published his award-winning autobiography, chronicling it all. 

Director Simon McBurney explores the rise and fall of the legendary film producer against the backdrop of a changing America through the second half of the 20thcentury.

“I went from royalty to infamy. Royalty fades. Infamy stays.”

The Kid Stays in the Picture is co-produced with Patrick Milling Smith, Barbara Broccoli, Michael G Wilson, Brian Carmody and Royal Court Theatre Productions in association with Complicite.

Heather Burns, Max Casella and Ajay Naidu are appearing with the permission of UK Equity, incorporating the Variety Artistes’ Federation, pursuant to an exchange program between American Equity and UK Equity.

Listings Information:

Patrick Milling Smith, Barbara Broccoli, Michael G Wilson, Brian Carmody and the Royal Court Theatre

In association with Complicit

The Kid Stays in the Picture 

Based on the life story of Robert Evans

Jerwood Theatre Downstairs, Royal Court Theatre, Sloane Square, SW1W 8AS
Tuesday 7 March 2017 – Saturday 8 April 2017
Monday – Saturday 7.30pm
Thursday & Saturday matinees 2.30pm (from 18 March)
Captioned Performance 29 March
Audio Described 8 April 2.30pm with Touch Tour at 1pm
Press Night 15 March, 7pm
Age Guidance 14+ Contains strong language
Standard Tickets £12 – £45 (Mondays all seats £12 available from 9am online on the day of performance)
First Look Tickets** £12, £16, £25, £35
Concessions* £5 off top two prices  (available in advance for previews and all matinees)

Under 26s £15 (available across all performances for individual bookers, Bands B and C only)
Access £15 (plus a companion at the same rate)
*ID required. All discounts subject to availability.





The Royal Court Theatre Releases New Playwright’s Podcast Series

Royal Court Theatre

Today the Royal Court Theatre release the first in a 12 part series of podcasts with leading playwrights. The Playwright’s Podcast goes live at

with a new episode released every Friday over the next 12 weeks. Throughout the series Royal Court Associate Playwright Simon Stephens talks to April De Angelis, Rachel De-lahay, Tanika Gupta, David Hare, Robert Holman, Dennis Kelly, Alistair McDowall, Anthony Neilson, Joe Penhall, Lucy Prebble, Anya Reiss, Polly Stenham and Enda Walsh.

Commenting on the podcast series Simon Stephens said;

“Over the past few months I have had conversations with some of the most exciting playwrights in the country. It has been a real honour. Our conversations have been rangy and lengthy and detailed and fun. I’ve asked them about their careers and their lives, their ambitions and their work. I think, collectively, they offer an extraordinary insight into how playwrights work in the UK today. I am thrilled that these conversations will be aired over the next few months.”

Podcast release schedule;

Enda Walsh – Friday 9 December 2016

April De Angelis – Friday 16 December 2016

Dennis Kelly & Joe Penhall – Friday 23 December 2016

Polly Stenham – Friday 30 December 2016

David Hare – Friday 6 January 2017

Rachel De-lahay – Friday 13 January 2017

Alistair McDowall – Friday 20 January 2017

Lucy Prebble – Friday 27 January 2017

Anthony Neilson – Friday 3 February

Anya Reiss – Friday 10 February

Robert Holman – Friday 17 February

Tanika Gupta – Friday 24 February

Caryl Churchill’s Escaped Alone to transfer to New York’s BAM Harvey Theatre

Following a sell-out run at the Royal Court Theatre in 2016, BAM Harvey Theater and the Royal Court Theatre are delighted to announce that James Macdonald’s production of Caryl Churchill’s Escaped Alone will transfer to New York for a strictly limited run. Opening on 15 February 2017 at BAM Harvey Theater, New York tickets for the run can be purchased at Before running in New York, the production returns for a short run in the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs 25 January – 11 February 2017, and goes on a national tour 7 March – 26 March 2017 at The Lowry, Salford Quays; Cambridge Arts Theatre and Bristol Old Vic. Tickets for the UK performances are on sale now.

 Caryl Churchill’s Escaped Alone was first staged at the Royal Court in January 2016 and received critical and public acclaim, with tickets selling out for the production’s run. Original cast members Linda Bassett, Deborah Findlay, Kika Markham, and June Watson; as well as the original creative team, return for the transfer and tour.

“I’m walking down the street and there’s a door in the fence open and inside there are three women I’ve seen before.”

Three old friends and a neighbour. A summer of afternoons in the back yard. Tea and catastrophe.

Directed by James Macdonald, design by Miriam Buether, lighting by Peter Mumford and sound by Christopher Shutt.

Royal Court Theatre Gala Casting Announcement

Royal Court Theatre Gala Casting
  • Zawe Ashton, Kenneth Cranham,Aimee Ffion-Edwards, Deborah Findlay,  Harry Haddon-Patten, Lesley Manville, Kika Markham, Wunmi Mosaku, Kate O’Flynn, Maxine Peake, Stephen Rea, Lesley Sharp,  Andrew Scott and Meera Syal to appear in The Bash at the Royal Court Theatre Wednesday 2 November 2016.
  • 6 exclusive On Stage seats available.
  • Online auction prizes include a one-to-one acting class with Maxine Peake, dinner with  Stephen Mangan and Tamsin Grieg, an exclusive Harry Potter and the Cursed Child experience with director John Tiffany, playwriting masterclass with playwright Simon Stephens, a Match of the Day experience with Gary Lineker, a Channel Four experience with Jon Snow, a day at London Fashion week with the Vivienne Westwood team and a day on set of writer Abi Morgan’s new drama The Split.
Royal Court Theatre Gala Casting

Royal Court Theatre Gala Casting

Initial casting has been announced for the Royal Court Theatre’s 60th anniversary fundraiser The Bash. A once in a lifetime performance including scenes from iconic Royal Court plays with actors including (in alphabetical order): Zawe Ashton, Kenneth Cranham, Aimee Ffion-Edwards, Deborah Findlay,  Harry Haddon-Patten, Lesley Manville, Kika Markham, Wunmi Mosaku, Kate O’Flynn, Maxine Peake, Stephen Rea, Lesley Sharp,  Andrew Scott and Meera Syal.

The evening will begin with a Moet & Chandon reception followed by a pre-show dinner before guests head in to the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs for the gala performance. Following the performances the theatre’s Front of House spaces will be transformed for a post-show party with DJs, live music, Caorunn Gin Cocktails, pop up dessert stands and POPS champagne popsicles.

Tickets start at £100 with 6 exclusive On Stage seats. See below listings for detailed ticket prices and breakdown. Tickets can be booked here

There is an online auction prior to the event where bids can be made on a host of money can’t buy experiences including:

  • A one-to-one acting class with Maxine Peake
  • Supper with actors Stephen Mangan and Tamsin Grieg
  • A week’s work experience at the Royal Court Theatre
  • An exclusive Harry Potter and the Cursed Child experience with Director John Tiffany
  • A playwriting masterclass with playwright Simon Stephens
  • A Match of the Day experience with Gary Lineker
  • A week’s work experience at TV production company Sister Productions
  • A Channel Four experience with Jon Snow
  • A day at London Fashion week with the Vivienne Westwood team
  • A day on set of writer Abi Morgan’s new drama The Split

For all the lots and further details see

The Bash is sponsored by Aqua Financial and Vanity Fair.

The Royal Court is a registered charity and needs to raise £1.7 million per year through private donations. All funds raised on the night will go towards the 60 year mission to seek out, develop and nurture the boldest, brightest and best playwrights.


Royal Court theatre casting announcement: The Sewing Group

Cast of The Sewing Group by EV Crowe

Nancy Crane, Fiona Glascott, Jane Hazlegrove, John Mackay, Sarah Niles and Alison O’Donnel have been cast in E V Crowe’s new play The Sewing Group which runs in the Royal Court Jerwood Theatre Upstairs Thursday 10 November – Thursday 22 December 2016 with press night 16 November.

Cast of The Sewing Group by EV Crowe

Cast of The Sewing Group by EV Crowe

Directed and designed by Stewart Laing. With lighting design by Mike Brookes and sound design by Christopher Shutt.

“I have spoken very clearly with her and I have told her that she is new here and that she must live how we live.”

A woman arrives in a rural village in pre-industrial England. Her desire is to sew and learn from their simple way of life. But the group soon begins to suspect she is not who they thought she was.

“There’s no point in just making quilts. They have to serve the village. They have to DO something.”


E V Crowe (Playwright)

For the Royal Court: Hero (part of the 2013 Olivier Award Winning Season at the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs), Kin (Shortlisted for Charles Wintour Most Promising Playwright Award) and One Runs the Other Doesn’t (Elephant and Castle). 

Other theatre includes: Brenda (Hightide/Yard), I Can Hear You (RSC), Liar Liar (Unicorn Theatre), Doris Day (Clean Break/Soho), Young Pretender (nabokov), ROTOR (Siobhan Davies Dance)

Television includes: Glue, Big Girl.

Radio includes: How to Say Goodbye Properly.

Awards include: the Imison Award for How to Say Goodbye Properly.

E V Crowe was a member of the Royal Court Young Writers Programme, attachments include: Royal Court Theatre (Summer 2009), National Theatre Studio (2010 and 2011), Shauspiel Theatre, Frankfurt (Feb 2011), Helenico Theatre, Mexico City (Feb 2012).


Stewart Laing (Director and Designer)

As designer for the Royal Court: Waiting Room Germany and Holy Mothers.

As director theatre includes: Home: Stornoway (National Theatre of Scotland); Ten Plagues (Traverse); The Maids (Citizens); Ophelia (Oran Mor) and Titus Andronicus (Dundee Rep).

Opera includes: La bohème (Scottish Opera); The Breasts of Tiresias and L’heure espagnole (Grange Park Opera); Tosca (Norrlandsoperan); and Dead Man Walking (Malmö Opera).

Stewart is Artistic Director of Untitled Projects where his work includes J.G. Ballard Project, blind_sight, Slope, An Argument About Sex, The Salon Project, Paul Bright’s Confessions of a Justified Sinner and Slope Redux.


Nancy Crane (E)

For the Royal Court: Now or Later, The Sweetest Swing in Baseball, Our Late Night, The Strip.

Other theatre includes: Teddy Ferrara (Donmar); Next Fall (Southwark Playhouse); Chimerica (Almeida/West End); Vieux Carre (King’s Head); The Children’s Hour (West End); Design for Living (Old Vic); Love the Sinner, Angels in America (National); Re-Orientations (Shanghai Dramatic Arts Centre); Dis-Orientations (Riverside); Chains of Dew, Trifles (Orange Tree); The Girl in the Goldfish Bowl, Six Degrees of Separation (Crucible, Sheffield); The Price (Tour); Habitat (Royal Exchange, Manchester); A Wedding Story (Sphinx); Our Late Night (New Ambassadors); Absolution (BAC); A Walk on Lake Erie (Finborough); Last of the Red Hot Lovers (Derby Playhouse); Never The Sinner (Belgrade, Coventry).

Television includes: Doctors, Nixon’s The One, Upstairs Downstairs, Law & Order UK, The Special Relationship, Cambridge Spies, Strike Force.

Film includes: Leavey, Florence Foster Jenkins, The Danish Girl, Woman in Gold, Batman: The Dark Knight, The Road to Guantanamo, Sky Captain & The World of Tomorrow, The Machinist.


Fiona Glascott (C/Maggie)

For the Royal Court: Hitchcock Blonde (& West End).

Other theatre includes: King Lear (Theatre Royal, Bath); Huis Clos (Trafalgar Studios); Kingdom of Earth (Print Room); Flea in her Ear (Old Vic); Here (Sky Arts); The Country Wife, Mahler’s Conversation (West End); Whipping It Up (Bush); A Life (Abbey); The Shaughraun (Royal Lyceum, Edinburgh) and The Spirit of Annie Ross (Gate).

Television includes: Indian Summers, Episodes, The Musketeers, Spooks, Miss Irena’s Children, Clone, Foyle’s War, Poirot, The Long Firm. 

Film includes: Jadotville, Brooklyn, The Legend of Longwood, Omagh, The Deal, Anton Chekhov’s The Duel.


Jane Hazlegrove (A)

For the Royal Court: Harvest, Herons.

Other theatre includes: Mammals, Wishbones, Boom Bang a Bang, The Mortal Ash (Bush); Kes (Royal Exchange, Manchester); Holes in the Skin (Chichester Festival); The Accrington Pals (West Yorkshire Playhouse); Sing Yer Heart Out For The Lads (National); Snake In The Grass (Old Vic); The Wolves (Paines Plough); Blood Wedding, All in Good Time, An Inspector Calls, Billy Liar, Death of a Salesman, Fangs, My Mother Said I Never Should, Spring & Port Wine, The Importance of Being Earnest, Time and the Conways (Octagon, Bolton); Heartbreak House (Library, Manchester), To Kill A Mockingbird (Contact, Manchester); Whistle Down the Wind (Oldham Coliseum).

Television includes: Casualty, Will, Holby City, Doctors, Judge John Deed, Dalziel & Pascoe, Faith, The Bill, Heartbeat, The Inspector Lynley Mysteries, Buried, Silent Witness, People Like Us, Without Motive, Hero to Zero, Where The Heart Is, The Cops, Dinnerladies, London’s Burning, The Grand, The Ruth Rendell Mysteries: You Can’t Be Too Careful, Jonathan Creek, Lovejoy, A Touch Of Frost, Making Out, Waterfront Beat, Families, Screen Two: Lovebirds, Shooting Stars, First Sight, How We Used To Live, Albion Market, Coronation Street, Summer Season,Travelling Man, Threads.

Film includes: Cheeky.


John Mackay (F and Mac)

Theatre includes: Wild, Drawing the Line, 55 Days (Hampstead); Measure for Measure (Young Vic); Oresteia (Almeida); Richard III, (Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory); Going Dark (Young Vic/ Sound & Fury); Little Eagles, Antony & Cleopatra, King Lear, The Winter’s Tale, Julius Caesar, The Grainstore, The Histories, Twelfth Night, As You Like It, Pilate, Hamlet (RSC). 

Television includes: Hollow Crown II, The Honourable Woman, Holby City, Law & Order; The Great Transatlantic Cable, Doc Martin, Casualty, Trial & Retribution III.


Sarah Niles (B)

For the Royal CourtFather Comes Home From The Wars (Parts 1, 2 & 3); Truth & Reconciliation. 
Theatre includes
Boy (Almeida); The Crucible (Old Vic); Anthony & Cleopatra (RSC/Off Broadway); Table, Mrs Affleck (National); A Question of Freedom (Feelgood); The Long Road (Curve, Leicester); The Quiet Little Englishman (Zho Visual); Play Size (ATC/Young Vic); Bones (Bush); The Bogus Woman, The Lion the Witch & the Wardrobe, To Kill a Mockingbird (Haymarket, Leicester); Entarete Musik (Amazonia Theatre Company); Lowdown High Notes (Red Ladder); Black Love (Black Arts Development Project); Caucasian Chalk Circle (Manchester Library).

Television includesMarley’s Ghosts, Lucky Man, My Baby, Catastrophe, Spotless, Death in Paradise, Waterloo Road, Being Human, Thorne: Sleepyhead, Beautiful People, Mister Eleven, Doctor Who, Peep Show, Touch of Frost.
Film includes
Still, Austenland, Cuban Fury, Now Is Good, London Boulevard, Games Men Play, Happy-Go-Lucky.


Alison O’Donnell (D/Sally)

Theatre includes: Much Ado About Nothing (The Faction); Brenda (HighTide/The Yard); Incognito (Bush/nabokov); Beached (Soho); White Rose (Firebrand); Boys (Soho/Headlong); Yerma (Gate/Hull Truck); The Hard Man (Scottish Theatres Consortium); My Romantic History (Bush/ Crucible, Sheffield); Eigengrau (Bush); Dolls (National Theatre of Scotland); Lady Windermere’s Fan (Òran Mór); The Assassination of Paris Hilton (Racked); Mad Funny Just (Creased); 2, 1 In 5, (Hampstead Theatre Dairing Pairings); Phaedre (Offstage); Barren (Old Vic New Voices); Broken Road (Hush Productions); Love Sex & Cider (Jacuzzi).

Television includes: Shetland, Holby City.


Listings Information:

The Sewing Group
By E V Crowe
Directed by Stewart Laing
Jerwood Theatre Upstairs
Thursday 10 November – Thursday 22 December 2016
Monday – Saturday 
Thursday & Saturday matinees 3pm (from 19 November)
Captioned Performance 7 December, 7.45pm
Press Night Wednesday 16 November, 7pm
Age Guidance 14+ Contains strong language
Standard Tickets £25 (Mondays all seats £10 available from 9am online on the day of performance)
First Look Tickets** £20
Concessions* £5. 25s and under £15 (available in advance for previews and all matinees)
Access £15 (plus a companion at the same rate)
*ID required. All discounts subject to availability.


**First Look Tickets
At the Royal Court no piece of work we premiere has ever been seen before and the first few performances in front of an audience are the final part of a long creative process that starts with the playwright. We need the audiences’ feedback to complete this and have decided to open up the first three previews in a new way to make this an integral part of the process. As a result we will be inviting online feedback from audience members who attend First Look performances so they can share what they think with the artistic team, therefore influencing the final piece.