James Macdonald directs a new production of multi Tony and Pulitzer prize-winning playwright Edward Albee’s landmark play Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
★★★★★ ‘Imelda Staunton at her magnificent best. A first rate revival of an astonishing play. Perfection.’ -- The Guardian, Michael Billington
★★★★★‘ A fierce revival. Conleth Hill is superb. Exquisite.’ - The Evening Standard, Henry Hitchings
★★★★★ ‘James Macdonald’s superlative production. Flawless.’ - The Daily Telegraph, Dominic Cavendish
★★★★★ ‘One of the greatest feats of acting I have witnessed. A brilliant night out.’ - The Independent, Paul Taylor
★★★★★ ‘Intoxicatingly good. James Macdonald’s blistering production. Imelda Staunton and Conleth Hill are superb.’ - Financial Times
Starring Olivier and Bafta award-winning actress Imelda Staunton (Gypsy, Sweeney Todd, Edward Albee’s A Delicate Balance); Olivier award-winner Conleth Hill (Game Of Thrones, Stones In His Pockets, The Producers); Olivier award-winner Luke Treadaway (The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Fortitude, The Hollow Crown) and Imogen Poots, in her West End debut (A Long Way Down, Jane Eyre and Me And Orson Wells).
‘With America currently engaged in its own form of post-truth politics, now seems the perfect time to revive Albee’s enduring masterpiece about the danger of living in a world of illusions.’ -- Michael Billington, The Guardian
‘Albee’s enduring masterpiece about the danger of living in a world of illusions.’ --The Guardian (September 2016)
In the early hours of the morning on the campus of an American college, Martha, much to her husband George’s displeasure, has invited the new professor Nick and his wife Honey to their home for some after-party drinks. As the alcohol flows and dawn approaches, the young couple are drawn into George and Martha’s toxic games until the evening reaches its climax in a moment of devastating truth-telling.
Imelda Staunton returns to the West End after her triumphant and Olivier Award-winning performance as Mama Rose in Gypsy. Amongst her many other theatre credits, notable performances include Mrs Lovett in Sweeney Todd, for which she won an Olivier Award, Circle Mirror Transformation for the Royal Court and the role of Claire in Edward Albee’s A Delicate Balance at the Almeida Theatre. In total, Staunton has been nominated for eleven Olivier Awards, winning four. On film Staunton is perhaps best known for playing the title role in Vera Drake, for which she received the BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role, and for the role of Dolores Umbridge in the Harry Potter films.
Conleth Hill is perhaps best known for his role as Lord Varys in the HBO television production Game of Thrones. A multi award-winning theatre actor, amongst his extensive theatre credits, recent productions include Quartermaine’s Terms at the Wyndham’s Theatre and The Cherry Orchard at the National Theatre. Hill won the Olivier Award for Best Actor for The Producers, Theatre Royal Drury Lane, and for Stones In His Pockets in the West End. He also received Tony Award nominations for his role in Stones In His Pockets on its transfer to Broadway and The Seafarer, which transferred from the National Theatre to Broadway. Hill’s film credits include Salmon Fishing in the Yemen and Whatever Works, directed by Woody Allen
Imogen Poots (Honey) makes her West End debut with Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Poots made her breakthrough performance as Tammy in the film 28 Weeks Later. She won the British Independent Film Award for Best Supporting Actress for The Look of Love in 2013 and was nominated for Best Actress at the 2015 Evening Standard British Film Awards for her role in Peter Bogdanovich’s She’s Funny That Way. Other film credits include Terrence Mallick’s The Knight of Cups, Green Room, Filth, Jimi: All Is By My Side, A Late Quartet and Jane Eyre. Poots will next be seen starring opposite Michael Shannon in Frank and Lola, which premiered at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival to great acclaim. On television, she recently played the female lead in Cameron Crowe’s debut television series Roadies (Showtime).
Luke Treadaway (Nick) won an Olivier Award for his performance as Christopher in the internationally acclaimed hit The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (National Theatre/ West End) and also originated the role of Albert in the earliest production of War Horse, again at the National. For film, Treadaway plays the lead in the upcoming Sony Pictures release A Street Cat Named Bob, adapted from the New York Times bestselling novel. For television, in January he returns to his role of scientist Vincent Rattrey in the second series of Sky Atlantic’s critically acclaimed Fortitude. His further credits include the lead character of Alex Higgins in BBC’s The Rack Pack, the Duke of Richmond in the second series of The Hollow Crown (BBC/NBC/Neal Street Productions), as well as Sky Arts mini-series The Nightmare World of H.G. Wells with Michael Gambon
Edward Albee was born on March 12th 1928 and began writing plays 30 years later. His plays include The Zoo Story (1958), The Death of Bessie Smith (1959), The Sandbox (1959), The American Dream (1960), Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1961-62, Tony Award), Tiny Alice (1964), A Delicate Balance (1966, Pulitzer Prize; 1996, Tony Award), All Over (1971), Seascape (1974, Pulitzer Prize), Listening (1975), Counting the Ways (1975), The Lady from Dubuque (1977-78), The Man Who Had Three Arms (1981), Finding the Sun (1982), Marriage Play (1986-87), Three Tall Women (1991, Pulitzer Prize), Fragments (1993), The Play about the Baby (1997), The Goat or, Who is Sylvia? (2000, 2002 Tony Award), Occupant (2001), At Home at the Zoo: Act 1, Homelife. Act 2, The Zoo Story. (2004), and Me, Myself & I (2008). Mr. Albee was awarded the Gold Medal in Drama from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters in 1980. In 1996 he received the Kennedy Center Honors and the National Medal of Arts. In 2005 he was awarded a special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement.
You will not find a more star-loaded show this spring so book your tickets while stock lasts!
Please note Thursday 17th May's performance will be part of NT Live and will start at 7pm. You will need to be seated by 6.45pm latest and there will be cameras in the Stalls level and possibly Dress Circle. No latecomers will be admitted.