BWW Previews: The London Stage, July 2014
Summer seems to have permeated even the theatrical air this month, with the curtain falling on King Lear's hurricanoes (a shame Glastonbury Festival's hurricanes are still howling away...) and the pretty floral posters of the gloriously romantic Shakespeare in Love jigging into the Noel Coward Theatre on July 23. Tennessee Williams's uncomfortably hot masterpiece, Streetcar Named Desire, opens at the Young Vic's main house (July 28) and Wilde's inimitable comedy of poor manners and muffins in the garden, The Importance of Being Ernest, quips into the Harold Pinter from July 27 .
This new, actor-musicianship based adaptation of Tom Stoppard's Oscar winning film is surely not to be missed, though is by no means the only new play on the horizon; Nick Payne (famed for Constellations and The Same Deep Water As Me) is presenting a one man show, The Art of Dying, at the Royal Court Upstairs. Peter Brook and Marie-Helene Estienne's production The Valley of Astonishment will be at the Young Vic until July 12. This show combines neurological research with Persian verse and promises an intriguing, challenging night at the theatre- few who see it seem to say a word against it.
Of nastier scripts - well, the Globe will soon be less bloody, as Shakespeare's most abhorrent script, Titus Andronicus, steps down on July 13. However, we'll hardly be wanting for gruesome tragedies of revenge, as Medea will be stepping into the National Theatre's Olivier Theatre on July 14. This much anticipated adaptation, starring Helen McCrory (of Skyfall and Blood Wedding fame) and directed by Carrie Cracknell (Blurred Lines and the Young Vic's A Doll's House) looks to be an exciting adaptation of the Euripides drama and could prove immensely useful in bringing Greek tragedy off the page for the many students who study this archaic, intense form. Finally, Arthur Miller's wonderful drama The Crucible opens at the Old Vic. In an unusual move for this theatre, the production will be in the round. This upsetting story echoes the terrors of McCarthyism, in a harrowing tale of witch hunts among neighbours and family, which the flawed, admirable protagonists must somehow overcome without condemning others and themselves.
Happily, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time will return to the Gielgud Theatre, following its alarming departure from the Apollo Theatre due to the collapse of the theatre's roof. This is a quirky, fun and heartfelt show, which deserves its steady place in the West End. All in all, July should be another exciting month for theatre...enjoy!