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Richard Eyre directs Penelope Wilton in a major revival of David Hare’s The Bay At Nice

Penelope Wilton

The Menier Chocolate Factory today announced a major revival of David Hare’s The Bay at NiceRichard Eyre directs Martin HutsonOphelia LovibondDavid Rintouland Penelope Wilton. The production opens on 19 March, with previews from 14 March, and runs until 4 May. Tickets go on sale to supporters of the Menier on 21 January, with public booking opening at 9am on 28 January.

In Leningrad in 1956, Valentina Nrovka has been invited to the Hermitage to offer her opinion on the authenticity of a Matisse painting, as she knew the great artist personally. Her daughter Sophia, also a painter, meets her there to seek her mother’s help, both financially and politically. This first London revival of David Hare’s play, since its première at the National Theatre in 1986, explores a mother and daughter’s fight for personal ideals and domestic responsibilities, as well as the choices made both in life and art.

David Hare is an Olivier Award winning playwright and Academy Award nominated screenwriter. As a playwright his work includes Slag (Hampstead Theatre, Royal Court, New York Shakespeare Festival), The Great Exhibition (Hampstead), Brassneck (with Howard Brenton, Nottingham Playhouse), Knuckle (Comedy Theatre), Fanshen (Hampstead & ICA, National Theatre), Teeth ‘n ‘Smiles (Royal Court, Wyndham’s Theatre), Plenty (National Theatre, NYSF & Broadway), A Map Of The World (National Theatre, NYSF),Pravda (with Howard Brenton, National Theatre), The Bay At Nice (National Theatre), The Secret Rapture (National Theatre, NYSF & Broadway), Racing Demon (National Theatre, Broadway), Murmuring Judges (National Theatre), The Absence Of War (National Theatre), Skylight (National Theatre, Wyndhams, Vaudeville & Broadway), Amy’s View (National Theatre, Aldwych, Garrick, & Broadway), The Blue Room (Donmar, Broadway and Theatre Royal Haymarket), The Judas Kiss (Playhouse & Broadway), Via Dolorosa (Royal Court, Almeida, Duchess & Broadway), My Zinc Bed (Royal Court), The Breath Of Life (Theatre Royal Haymarket), The Permanent Way (Out of Joint & National Theatre), Stuff Happens (National Theatre & NYSF), The Vertical Hour (Broadway & Royal Court Theatre), Gethsemane (National Theatre), Berlin/Wall (National Theatre, Royal Court & NYSF), The Power Of Yes (National Theatre), South Downs (Chichester Festival Theatre and Harold Pinter Theatre), Behind the Beautiful Forevers(National Theatre), Ivanov, Platonov and The Seagull (Chichester Festival Theatre and National Theatre), The Moderate Soprano (Chichester Festival Theatre and Duke of York’s Theatre), The Master Builder (The Old Vic), The Red Barn and I’m Not Running (both National Theatre).

Martin Hutson plays Assistant Curator. His theatre work includes Titus Andronicus, Julius Caesar (RSC), R and D (Hampstead Theatre), The Master Builder (The Old Vic), Taken at Midnight (Chichester Festival Theatre and Theatre Royal Haymarket), The Libertine (Citizens Theatre), If Only, Antony and Cleopatra, A Marvellous Year for Plums(Chichester Festival Theatre), Butley (Duchess Theatre) and The Voysey Inheritance (National Theatre). For television, his work includes Tutankhamun, The Honourable Woman, The Passion, Foyle’s War and A Very British Scandal; and for film, Backdraft 2, Dragonheart: Battle for the Heartfire, Atonement and Virtual Sexuality.

Ophelia Lovibond plays Sophia Yepileva. Her theatre work includes Nightfall (Bridge Theatre), The Libertine (Theatre Royal Haymarket) and The Effect (Sheffield Theatres). For television her work includes Elementary, W1A, Inside No 9, Mr Sloane, The Poison Tree, Titanic: Blood and Steel and Messiah; and for film, The Autopsy of Jane Doe, Man Up, Guardians of the Galaxy, A Single Shot, Gozo, Eight Minutes Idle, Mr Popper’s Penguins, Chatroom, Nowhere Boy, Shadow in the Sun, Popcorn and Oliver Twist.

David Rintoul plays Peter Linitsky. His theatre credits include Much Ado About Nothing (Rose Theatre Kingston), Hamlet (Almeida Theatre/Harold Pinter Theatre), Nell Gwynn (Shakespeare’s Globe/Apollo Theatre), Remembrance of Things PastThe World Turned Upside DownThe Trojan War Will Not Take PlaceA Midsummer Night’s DreamThe Rivals (National Theatre),  A Midsummer Night’s Dream (RSC/Garsington Opera), Richard IIRichard III (Phoenix Theatre), Map of the Heart (Gielgud Theatre),Dirty Dancing (Aldwych Theatre), An Ideal Husband (The Old Vic), Etta Jenks and Sergeant Ola and his Followers (Royal Court Theatre). Television credits include The Crown, In Plain Sight, Game of Thrones, the title role in Doctor FinlayInjusticePride and Prejudice, The Cherry OrchardHoratio Hornblower: RetributionHornblower: Mutiny, Poirot and Sweet Medicine; and for film, The Iron Lady, My Week with Marilyn, Unrelated, The Ghost Writer, Ironclad: Battle for Blood, Is Anybody There? and Agent Hamilton.

Penelope Wilton plays Valentina Nrovka. For theatre, her work includes Taken at Midnight – Olivier Award for Best Actress (Chichester Festival Theatre and Theatre Royal Haymarket), A Delicate Balance, Heartbreak House (Almeida Theatre), Hamlet (Donmar West End), The Family Reunion, The Chalk Garden (Evening Standard Award for Best Actress), John Gabriel Borkman, The Little Foxes, The Collection, The Lover, A Kind of Alaska (Donmar Warehouse) Women Beware Women (RSC), The House of Bernada Alba, Tess, The Secret Rapture, Betrayal (National Theatre), The Seagull (Barbican) and Long Day’s Journey Into Night (Young Vic). For television, her work includes Brief Encounters, South Riding, Downtown Abbey, Margot, Doctor Who, The Passion, Half Broken Things, Five Days, Celebration, Falling, Lucky Jim, Bob and Rose, Victoria and Albert, The Whistle-Blower, Wives and Daughters, Alice Through the Looking Glass, Talking Heads, The Borrowers and Ever Decreasing Circles; and for film, Zoo, The BFG, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel 2, Belle, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, The History Boys, Pride and Prejudice, Match Point, Shaun of the Dead, Iris, Calendar Girls, Tom’s Midnight Garden, Carrington, The Secret Rapture, Blame it on the Bellboy, Cry Freedom, ClockwiseThe French Lieutenant’s Woman, and the forthcoming Downton Abbey.

Richard Eyre’s extensive theatre includes Hamlet, Kafka’s Dick, Edmond (Royal Court), Comedians, Guys and Dolls, The Beggar’s Opera, The Government Inspector, The Futurists, The Changeling, The Voysey Inheritance, Racing Demon, Richard III, Night of the Iguana,  White Chameleon, Skylight,  Napoli Milionaria,  Sweet Bird of Youth, The Absence of War, John Gabriel Borkman, The Prince’s Play, Amy’s View, King Lear, The Invention of Love, Vincent in Brixton, The Reporter, The Observer, Welcome to Thebes, Liolà (National Theatre), The Crucible (Broadway), Mary Poppins (West End/Broadway), A Flea in Her Ear (The Old Vic), The Last of the Duchess (Hampstead Theatre), The Judas Kiss and The Dark Earth and the Light Sky, his own adaptations of Les Mains Sales, Hedda Gabler, Ghosts, Little Eyolf (Almeida Theatre), Private Lives, Betty Blue Eyes, Quartermaine’s Terms, Stephen Ward, Mr Foote’s Other Leg (West End), Long Day’s Journey Into Night (Bristol Old Vic and Wyndham’s Theatre), and The Last Cigarette, The Pajama Game, and The Stepmother (Chichester Festival Theatre). His television work includes The Insurance Man, Country, v, Tumbledown, Suddenly Last Summer, Changing Stages, Henry IV Parts I and II, The Dresser and King Lear; and for film, The Ploughman’s Lunch, Iris, Stage Beauty, Notes on a Scandal, The Other Man and The Children Act. He was Director of Nottingham Playhouse from 1973 – 1978, Producer of Play for Today for BBC TV 1978 – 1981, and Director of the National Theatre from 1988 – 1997. He has received numerous theatre and film awards and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.

Listings Information                                                                                                                     The Bay at Nice

Public booking opens on 28 January

Venue:                                Menier Chocolate Factory

Address:                             53 Southwark Street, London, SE1 1RU

Press performance:         19 March

Dates:                                 14 March – 4 May

Times:                                For the performance schedule, please see the website

Box Office:                         020 7378 1713 (£2.50 transaction fee per booking)

Website:                        www.menierchocolatefactory.com (£1.50 transaction fee per booking)

Tickets: Prices vary, as below from discounted preview tickets to premier seats. With the emphasis on ‘the sooner you book, the better the price’:

A meal deal ticket includes a 2-course meal from the pre-theatre menu in the Menier Restaurant as well as the theatre ticket.

www.menierchocolatefactory.com

Twitter: @MenChocFactory

Rehearsal images released of ‘The Red Barn’ a new play by David Hare with a cast including Mark Strong, Hope Davis and Elizabeth Debicki

The Red Barn a new play by David Hare, based on the novel, La Main, by Georges Simenon opens in the Lyttelton Theatre on 6 October (press night 17 October).

The great detective writer Georges Simenon escaped France at the end of World War Two, and arrived in the USA to start again. With his American wife, he settled at Shadow Rock Farm in Lakeville, Connecticut. Years later, he wrote La Main, a psychological thriller set in a New England farmhouse.

REHEARSAL IMAGES – THE RED BARN

David Hare has taken this novel and forged from it a startling new play that unfolds in Connecticut in 1969. On their way back from a party, two couples struggle home through the snow. Not everyone arrives safely.

The cast is Elizabeth Debicki, Hope Davis, Michael Elwyn, Stuart Milligan, Anna Skellern, Mark Strong, Oliver Wilson, Nigel Whitmey and Jade Yourell.

 The Red Barn plays in the Lyttelton Theatre from Thursday 6 October until 17 January. The Red Barn is produced in association with Scott Rudin.                        

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Mark Ravenhill, Playwright: “There is really only one rule to learn before writing a play”.

Mark Ravenhill
Mark Ravenhill

Mark Ravenhill

Mark Ravenhill is a playwright. 20 years later ‘Shopping and Fucking‘ still looks like it’s from the future and Mark continues to look ahead. I thought it would be nice to catch up with Mark to see exactly what’s happening. And I was right – it was very nice indeed.
Despite not really doing interviews he agreed to a chat. Here’s what happened.

Hi Mark Ravenhill. If you were to draw a graph of the last ten years, how would it look?
Some leaps of imagination needed here.  First, that I could draw a graph. Which I can’t.  I’ve never been able to stick to the squares on graph paper. And second, that I have the kind of mind that imagines shapes that fit on graph paper.  Which I don’t have either.  So my graph of the last ten years would me trying to think in a way which I can’t, using a medium that I’m not suited to.  In other words, my graph of the last ten years would be one of messy failure. That is not a metaphor. Or a cry for help.

A view from Islington north

A view from Islington north

 

What can you tell us about A View From Islington North the ‘evening of political satire’ you are contributing to with Out of Joint? ‘A View From Islington North’ is a celebration of Max Stafford-Clark’s relationships with playwrights.  All the playwrights who’ve written the pieces have had work directed by Max over decades. He first directed work by Caryl Churchill and David Hare in the 1970s.  I’m one of the johnny-come-latelies, having only first worked with him twenty years ago.  Max is a brilliant, infuriating, insightful and relentless director

What’s your favourite emoji?
The winky one

Shopping and Fucking

Shopping and Fucking

Shopping and Fucking is often described as a period piece isn’t it.
I don’t know how other people describe it (if it all) but yes I would describe it as period piece. I wanted to write what it felt like to be in your twenties in that moment in time.  It doesn’t have any references to contemporary events outside the play but it’s whole mood and style belongs to the late 1990s. It’s a play that is sorted for Es and whizz.

With writers it feels like there’s a constant expectation, and that they need to keep proving themselves, throughout their career. Which perhaps isn’t quite the same for a director where you can just keep going until you fall over. Is that a fair analysis?
Do you think so?  I think directors suffer from constant expectation and many fall out of favour and fashion.  But it’s true that there is a high burn out with playwrights.  Some have one brilliant debut at somewhere like the Royal Court upstairs and then never write again. Plenty write three or four plays and then find they have no more plays to write.  Very few write plays over a lifetime. I’m fifty this year. To ensure that I too ‘can just keep going until you fall over’ I’ve mapped out a cycle of forty full length plays.  I’m committed to writing one a year, finishing each one on my birthday June 7th.  So that will take me until I’m 90, when I will fall over and die as I will have advanced osteoporosis.
If you were to write a playwriting rulebook, what would Rule One be?
There is really only one rule to learn before writing a play.  Never under any circumstances use the line ‘the door was open so I let myself in’. Everything else is allowed.
Let’s imagine we’re putting theatre as an art form in a capsule to sending it into space, which one play do you put forward?
One play to represent the whole of world theatre?  Wouldn’t it need to be a DVD of a performance? (the question is in danger of conflating a ‘play’ with ‘theatre’).  But let’s say it’s a play text.  I think it would have to be one of the Greeks. That’s drama in its purest and arguably most powerful form.  I would pick Sophocles’ ‘Antigone’, although it could just as well be Euripides ‘Medea’ or Aeschylus “Oresteia’.  How about I write a new English version and we ping that into space alongside the Ancient Greek text?
Do you endlessly analyse your creative decisions or are you impulsive?
I write first drafts almost entirely on impulse and then use analysis (often aided by the director and sometimes the actors) to work through further drafts.

Do you pay attention to critics?
I’ll listen to anyone who can help me understand what I’m doing and how I might get better at it.
To the people who are still reading, do you have a final message?
The door is still open. Let yourself out. Thank you.