Rachel O’Riordan, the new Artistic Director at London’s Lyric Hammersmith, has today announced for plans for her first season at the venue.
The season will open on 6th September with a new adaptation of Ibsen’s A DOLL’S HOUSE by Tanika Gupta (HOBSON’S CHOICE at the Royal Exchange, LIONS AND TIGERS at Shakespeare’s Globe). The new production, set in 1879 Calcutta, refocuses the themes of the play to British colonialism, and female perspectives on ownership and race. Directed by O’Riordan, the piece will star SUMMER AND SMOKE’s Anjana Vasan as Niru (Nora in Ibsen’s original) with further casting for the production to be announced. Gupta’s A DOLL’S HOUSE runs until 5th October.
David Greig’s new play SOLARIS, adapted from Stanisław Lem’s cult science fiction novel, arrives at the theatre from 10th October to 2nd November. Directed by Matthew Lutton, the psychological thriller is set on a space station orbiting the planet Solaris and asks who we are when we’re forced to confront our deepest fears. SOLARIS makes its London premiere in an international co-production with Melbourne’s Malthouse Theatre, and Edinburgh’s Royal Lyceum Theatre.
For their annual Christmas pantomime, the Lyric Hammersmith presents a new version of CINDERELLA written by Jude Christian, who returns to the venue following last year’s DICK WHITTINGTON. Directed by Tinuke Craig, CINDERELLA runs at Lyric Hammersmith from 16th November to 5th January.
In the new year, O’Riordan directs a revival of Mike Bartlett’s 2010 play LOVE, LOVE, LOVE. Running from 5th March to 4th April 2020, Bartlett’s play charts one couples turbulent relationship forty years on from first falling in love.
NINE NIGHT’s Roy Alexander Weise is to direct a new version of Sophocles’ ANTIGONE: THE BURIAL AT THEBES. Translated by Nobel laureate Seamus Heaney, the play focuses on Antigone, who battles for both her brothers to be buried. Supported by a chorus of young performers from the Lyric Ensemble, ANTIGONE runs from 18th April to 16th May 2020.
In autumn 2020, O’Riordan directs a new production of Martin McDonagh’s award-winning 1996 play, THE BEAUTY QUEEN OF LEEANNE. The dark comedy-drama revolves around 40-year-old spinster Maureen Folan, a plain, lonely woman in Ireland, and Mag, her manipulative, ageing mother. McDonagh’s play was last produced in London at the Young Vic in 2010 starring Irish actor Rosaleen Linehan. Dates for THE BEAUTY QUEEN OF LEEANNE are to be announced.
Lyric Hammersmith will collaborate with theatre company Headlong to commission and produce large-scale work by women at the venue and on tour, with the first to-be-announced production opening in 2020.
Rachel O’Riordan has also announced the venue’s new associate directors. Stuart Burt (Casting Director), Tinuke Craig (Director), Phillip McMahon (Playwright and Director), Nina Steiger (Dramaturg) and Simon Stephens (Playwright) will all be working with O’Riordan to produce work at the theatre.
Public booking for the new Lyric Hammersmith season goes on sale 24th May.