There are plenty of shows opening in the West End this week. Here is Love London Love Culture’s guide to some of the productions to look out for:
1. Cleansed, Dorfman theatre, National Theatre : Katie Mitchell directs this new production of Sarah Kane’s play.
Tinker practises the art of atrocity, but even he isn’t immune from the need for love. Existing on the border between beauty and brutality, Cleansed imagines a world in which language, human relationships and the body itself are pared away to bare bone.
Opening Night: 23rd February (booking until: 5th May)
2. The Father, Duke of York’s Theatre: Returning to the West End for a limited season only, this revival sees Kenneth Cranham reprising his role in Florian Zeller’s play, directed by James Macdonald.
Now eighty years old, Andre was once a tap dancer. He lives with his daughter Anne and her husband Antoine. Or was he an engineer whose daughter Anne lives in London with her new lover, Pierre? The thing is, he is still wearing his pyjamas and he can’t find his watch. He is starting to wonder if he’s losing control…
Opening Night: 24th February (booking until the 26th March).
3. The Tempest, Sam Wanamaker Playhouse: how about visiting the intimate surroundings of the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse to see this late work by Shakespeare directed by Dominic Dromgoole.
Prospero, Duke of Milan, usurped and exiled by his own brother, holds sway over an enchanted island. He is comforted by his daughter Miranda and served by the spirit Ariel and by Caliban, a ‘savage and deformed slave’. When Prospero raises a storm to wreck this brother and his confederates on the island, his long contemplated revenge at last seems within reach.
Opening Night: 24th February (booking until 22nd April).
4. I See You, Royal Court Theatre: this production is the directorial debut of Noma Dumezweni of a play set in Post-Apartheid South Africa.
Ben meets Skinn for a night out. But the party is interrupted by the police. Ben, a young student who doesn’t know his own history, is accused of a crime he didn’t commit. And Officer Buthelezi, a former freedom fighter, can’t let it go.
Opening Night: 25th February (booking until the 26th March).
5. The Maids, Trafalgar Studios: Jamie Lloyd presents the first production of Jean Genet’s play seen in the West End for twenty years. This new production stars Uzo Aduba, Zawe Ashton and Laura Carmichael.
In a luxurious bedroom, two maids fantasize about killing their employer, playing out dangerous and sadistic scenarios as they plan her violent death.
An intense psychological thriller seething with unique theatricality and brimming with intrigue, The Maids is a vicious analysis of the class system, and a provocative exploration of sexuality.
Opening Night: 25th February (booking until the 21st May)