Queen of Syria – reviews

Rehearsals for Queens of Syria. Photo by Deema Dabis.jpg

“I have a scream I have to let out. I want the world to hear it.”

The reviews are in for Queens of Syria an extraordinary modern retelling of Euripides’ Trojan Women by a group of Syrian women. Take a look below to see what critics make of the show.

★★★★★
“A raw reminder of our common humanity, hitting an extraordinary pitch of intensity”
The Times – read the full review here.

★★★★
“A terribly moving show for theatregoers but, most importantly, for members of the human race”
The Evening Standard – read the full review here.

★★★★
“An eloquent re-working of an ancient text – intense, compelling and humbling”
The Independent – read the full review here.

★★★★
“It’s a piece full of pain and longing —but there is icy, humbling rage here too”
Financial Times – read the full review here.

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Queens of Syria runs at the Young Vic now until 9 July and then goes on a UK tour. More info below:

11 – 12 July 2016
The North Wall Arts Centre, South Parade, Oxford, OX2 7JN
13 – 14 July 2016
Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts, Gardner Centre Road Falmer, Brighton, BN1 9RA
15 – 16 July 2016
Everyman Playhouse, 5-11 Hope St, Liverpool L1 9BH
18 July 2016
West Yorkshire Playhouse, Playhouse Square, Quarry Hill, Leeds, LS2 7UP
19 – 20 July 2016
Assembly Roxy, 2 Roxburgh Place, Edinburgh, EH8 9SU
21 July 2016
Assembly Rooms, 40 North Bailey, Durham, DH1 3ET
24 July 2016
New London Theatre, 166 Drury Lane, London, WC2B 5PW

Yerma | cast announcement

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We’ve got some exciting Yerma casting news for you. Billie Piper will be joined by Maureen Beattie, Brendan Cowell, John MacMillan, Charlotte Randle and Thalissa Teixeira. Take a look below and get to know the cast and for a sneak peek behind the scenes of our photoshoot with Billie Piper – click here.

Simon Stone’s version of  Yerma runs at the Young Vic from 28 Jul – 24 Sept. £10 tickets available. Book now: www.youngvic.org/whats-on/yerma

Maureen Beattie

Maureen Beattie
Previous Young Vic: The Skin of Our Teeth.
Theatre includes: Right Now (Ustinov/Bush/Traverse); John Gabriel Barclay (Oran Mor), The Jennifer Tremblay Trilogy (Stellar Quines/Edinburgh Festival); Romeo and Juliet (Rose, Kingston); Dark Road, Cherry Orchard (Royal Lyceum Edinburgh); Noises Off (Old Vic tour); No Quarter, Waiting Room Germany (Royal Court); Enquirer, 27 (National Theatre Scotland); The Masterbuilder (Chichester),The Merry Wives of Windsor, Othello (National Theatre); This Wide Night (Soho/Clean Break); Ghosts, Acting Up (Citizens); The Histories, Richard III, Titus Andronicus,The Man Who Came To Dinner, Mary and Lizzie, King Lear, Macbeth,The Constant Couple (RSC); Medea (Theatre Babel/Edinburgh Festival), Rebecca (UK tour); Small Change, The Taming of the Shrew (Sheffield Crucible); The Deep Blue Sea (Nottingham Playhouse), Candida (Plymouth/Salisbury), Hard to Get, The Widows of Clyth (Traverse), Othello (Lyric Hammersmith) and Daisy Pulls It Off (Gielgud).
Film includes: Spores, The List and The Decoy Bride.
Television includes: Outlander Series 2, Doctor Who Christmas Special 2014, Vera, Moving On-Letting Go, Midsomer Murders, Doctors, Lewis, The Worst Week Of My Life, The Last Musketeer, City Central, A Wing and a Prayer, Ruffian Hearts,Taggart, The Long Roads, Bramwell, All Night Long,The Chief and Casualty.

Brendan Cowell

Brendan Cowell
Theatre includes: The Wild Duck (Barbican, UK tour, Vienna and Amsterdam tour); Once in Royal David’s City, Miss Julie (Belvoir, Sydney); The Dark Room (nominated for Best Actor at the Sydney Theatre Awards; Company B); True West, Dissident, Goes Without Saying, Far Away, The Shape of Things (Sydney Theatre Company) and MEN (Old Fitzroy). Film includes: Last Cab to Darwin, Broke, Black Chook, Observance, Beneath Hill 60 (nominated for Best Actor in a Feature Film, Australian Film Institute Awards); I Love You Too, Save Your Legs!, Noise (winner of Best Actor in a Feature Film, Film Critics Circle Awards; nominated for Best Actor in a Feature Film, Australian Film Institute Awards and Inside Film Awards) and To End All WarsTelevision includes: Brock, The Let Down, The Outlaw Michael Howe (also written and directed), The Borgias (Series 3);  Love My Way (nominated for Outstanding Performance by an Actor, ASTRA Awards, Most Popular TV Actor, Silver Logie Awards and Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series, TV Week Awards as well as contributing several episodes over three series). Credits as a writer (UK) include: Happy New (Trafalgar Studios), Rabbit (Frantic Assembly UK tour), The Slap (nominated for a BAFTA and Emmy Award) and Ruben Guthrie (also directed; 2015 BFI London Film Festival).

John MacMillan

John Macmillan
Previous Young Vic: The Members of the Wedding and In The Red and Brown Water.
Theatre includes: The Homecoming (Trafalgar Studios); Children’s Children, The Last Days of Judas (Almeida); Sympathy For A Psycopath (Edinburgh Festival); Dream Weaver (Hull Truck); Titus Andronicus (National Drama Festival, Scarborough); Cymbeline (Cheek by Jowl World Tour); Piranha Heights (Soho); Macbeth (nominated for the Ian Charleson Award; Royal Exchange, Manchester) and Hamlet (nominated for the Ian Charleson Award; Donmar/Broadway). Film includes: Fury, Maleficent, World War Z, The Dark Knight Rises, Hanna and HeartlessTelevision includes: This Windsors, Chewing Gum, Hoff the Record, Critical, New Tricks, Silk Series 1-3, Miranda Unwrapped, Sherlock Homes: The Blind Banker and Hustle.

Billie PiperBillie Piper
Theatre includes: Great Britain, The Effect – Best Actress Olivier nomination, (National Theatre); Reasons To Be Pretty (Almeida) and Treats (Garrick). Film includes: City of Tiny Lights, Animals United, Things To Do Before You’re 30, The Calcium Kid and Spirit Trap. Television includes: Penny Dreadful Series 1-3, Foxtrot, Doctor Who Series 1-3, True Love, Secret Diary of a Call Girl, A Passionate Woman, Mansfield Park, The Shadow in the North, The Ruby in the Smoke, Much Ado About Nothing, Bella and the Boys and Canterbury Tales: The Miller’s Tale.

 

Charlotte RandleCharlotte Randle
Previous Young Vic: Public Enemy and King Lear (also Liverpool Everyman Playhouse).
Theatre includes: Birdland, Muse and Poem, Open Court – Actors and Poems (Royal Court); Deluge (Hampstead); Medea (Almeida); The Lyons (Menier Chocolate Factory); The King’s Speech (Tour & West End); Decade Ensemble (Headlong); Lingua Franca (Finborough/59E59 New York); Love the Sinner, Mother Courage, Romeo and Juliet (National Theatre); All About My Mother (Old Vic); Rabbit Bella (Old Red Lion/Trafalgar Studios); Rabbit Bella (59E59, New York); Don Carlos (also West End), Iphigenia, Sexual Perversity in Chicago, The Man Who Had All The Luck (Sheffield Crucible); Fuddy Meers (Birmingham Rep/Arts Theatre); Lobby Hero (Donmar Warehouse/New Ambassadors); The Taming of the Shrew and The Dispute (also Lyric Hammersmith) (RSC). Film includes: Being Considered, Joyride, The Honest Courtesan and The Token King. Television includes: Father Brown, The Trials of Jimmy Rose, Silent Witness, Legacy, Holby City, Doctors, The Bill, Casualty, The IT Crowd, The Brides in the Bath, EastEnders, McCallum, The Miller’s Tale and Lord Elgin. Radio includes: The Gambler, The Other Man, Don Carlos and The Ideal Heroine.

Thalissa Teixeira

Thalissa Teixeira
Theatre includes: The Night Watch (Royal Exchange); BU21 (Theatre 503); The Broken Heart, The Changeling (Globe) and Electra (Old Vic). Film includes: TakedownTelevision includes: The Musketeers.

A View from the Bridge wins two Tony Awards

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A View from the Bridge won two Tony Awards last night and we’re ecstatic. Ivo van Hove won for Best Direction and the show was recognised as the Best Revival of a Play. The critically acclaimed production was originally staged at the Young Vic in April 2014 and transferred to the London’s West End following a sold-out run. Later in 2015 it played a limited run at the Lyceum Theatre on Broadway, produced by Scott Rudin and Lincoln Center Theater. A View from the Bridge has played a total of 276 performances across these three venues and has been seen by audiences across the globe via NT Live broadcasts.

The most laurelled show in the Young Vic’s history, the Tony wins brings the total number of awards won by the production on both sides of the Atlantic to 12. Awards include Olivier Awards for Best Revival, Best Actor (Mark Strong) and Best Director; London Critics’ Circle Theatre Awards for Best Actor (Mark Strong) and Best Director; Outer Critics’ Circle Awards New York for Outstanding Director of a Play; Drama League Award for Outstanding Revival of a Play; Drama Desk Awards for Outstanding Revival of a Play and Outstanding Director of a Play; and a Theatre World Award for Mark Strong.

Take a look at the heartstopping trailer to A View from the Bridge at the Young Vic:

Accepting the Award for Best Revival of a Play, Producer of the Broadway production Scott Rudin said: “I especially want to thank Rebecca Miller for giving us the stewardship of her father’s remarkable play, Ivo van Hove who did it just, I think, absolutely remarkably, and David Lan and Young Vic who originated the production. We were the stewards of it, but honestly the real work was done by David and his team.”

Artistic Director of the Young Vic David Lan, added “It is the greatest play about immigrants – it felt like exactly the right time to do this play. It has been thrilling for us to bring it back to the city, where it’s a great song of the great people of New York.”

Accepting the Award for Best Director of a Play, Ivo van Hove said: “New York has been so welcoming to us this season. I’m so grateful to Scott Rudin who dared to bring the Belgian bad boy avant-gardist to a center of theatre life, to wonderful theatre life on Broadway.”

Daisy Heath, Lead Producer at the Young Vic, commented: “David told me about an incredible director called Ivo van Hove on my first day at the YV four and a half years ago. The original production was made by a dedicated group on The Cut in the summer of 2014 working to create the visions of both Ivo and Miller. Awards were honestly the last thing on our minds. So to have been recognised by Broadway and the Tony Awards is mind-blowing, a credit to everyone on and offstage in all three runs, and a source of deep pride for me.”

Lucy Woollatt, Executive Director of the Young Vic added: “The wins at the Tony Awards are a real achievement for all involved in the show’s life in the UK and US. Our talented team are supported by the Arts Council and our individual, trust and corporate donors. It’s this crucial support that allows us to program the work that we do and to give away 10% of tickets for free to young people and our neighbours.”
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In the press | Ivo van Hove talks to The New Yorker about his life as a director and bringing out the elemental drama of classic works.

“Devastatingly powerful” – ★★★★★ for Cuttin’ It

Tsion Habte (Iqra) and Adelayo Adedayo (Muna) in Cuttin' It at the Young Vic © David Sandison.jpg

Tsion Habte (Iqra) and Adelayo Adedayo (Muna) in Cuttin’ It at the Young Vic. Photo by David Sandison.

Charlene James’ award-winning new play about FGM in Britain opened at the Young Vic and it’s a glowing 4 stars all around. Take a look below to see what critics make of the show and click here for audience reactions to the show so far. Cuttin’ It runs at the Young Vic now until 11 June.

★★★★★
“70 of the finest minutes of drama 2016 is likely to offer”
Evening Standard – read the full review here.

★★★★
“Gripping, heartfelt and heartbreaking”
Guardian – read the full review here.

★★★★
“Brilliantly sharp – holds the audience spellbound”
Time Out- read the full review here.

★★★★
“Searingly potent and devastatingly powerful”
The Times

★★★★
“A starkly eloquent production – Charlene James writes with great power and sensitivity”
The Independent – read the full review here.

★★★★
“Unforgettable with brilliant performances”
The Telegraph – read the full review here.

★★★★
“Furious, powerful drama”
Financial Times

★★★★
“Powerful, unflinching and witty”
The Stage- read the full review here.

★★★★
“Superbly written and beautifully performed”
Whatsonstage – read the full review here.

After the run at the Young Vic, Cuttin’ It will go on to Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Royal Court Theatre, Sheffield Crucible and the Yard Theatre. For more info about the tour, click here

“Explosive and mesmerising” ★★★★★ for Blue/Orange

Luke Norris (Bruce), David Haig (Robert) and Daniel Kaluuya (Christopher) in Blue Orange at the Young Vic © Johan Persson.jpg

Matthew Xia’s revival of Joe Penhall’s “timeless” production of Blue/Orange opened at the Young Vic to critical acclaim. Take a look below at what critics have to say about the show. You can also read the audience responses to the show here. Blue/Orange runs at the Young Vic now until 2 Jul.

★★★★★
“Explosive and mesmerising… a contemporary classic”
The Arts Desk – read the full review here.

★★★★★
“David Haig’s Robert is a study in power”
The Arts Desk – read the full review here.

★★★★
“Packs even more of a punch 16 years after its debut… tremendous performances from Daniel Kaluuya, David Haig and Luke Norris”
The Guardian – read the full review here.

★★★★
“Daniel Kaluuya is superb as Christopher”
Time out – read the full review here.

★★★★
“A fierce and timely revival from Matthew Xia”
Evening Standard – read the full review here.

★★★★
“Sharply funny and provocative”
The Independent – read the full review here.

★★★★
“Daniel Kaluuya and Luke Norris are excellent and David Haig magisterial”
Sunday Express – read the full review here.

★★★★
“Three thrilling performances are just what the doctor ordered”
The Stage – read the full review here.

★★★★
“Disturbingly current – Kaluuya’s performance is thrilling”
Mail on Sunday

★★★★
“A beautifully pitched, fizzing revival”
Financial Times

★★★★
“Hilarious and razor sharp”
The Times

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We spoke to Joe Penhall, writer of Blue/Orange about his sharp, ‘state of the nation’ classic. Here’s what he had to say:

HORIZONS | a season exploring the lives of refugees

The Young Vic presents:

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A new season across three strands of the Young Vic’s work – productions on all three stages, on film and through Taking Part projects – is launched today.

A note from our Artistic Director, David Lan:
“Horizons is the Young Vic’s response to the world as it is now. People in distress need help and they need to be heard. We want to provide a powerful means for audiences at home and abroad to connect with the political, social and human realities refugees face. These are the central stories of our age. We are thrilled and moved to be working with compassionate and fearless people, some of whom had never been to a theatre before, as well as writers and artists including Paul Mason, Ian Rickson, Deanna Rodger, Isango Ensemble, Joe Murphy and Joe Robertson.

We are delighted to welcome Good Chance to our home on The Cut as an associate company, and to be able to support the inspirational work of the Joes and their team. We are proud to have been recognized by City of Sanctuary with an award for our work with refugee communities. By becoming a Theatre of Sanctuary, we extend our commitment to raising awareness of the plight of refugees.”
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Horizons launches with the release of the Young Vic’s latest short film, Astoria, written and directed by Paul Mason, former economics editor of Channel 4 News and BBC’s Newsnight. It follows a Syrian refugee’s journey to the West. Once there, an encounter with the past in a Budapest hotel draws a parallel between Europe’s historical and current response to refugees.

We’ve also announced Now We Are Here (20 – 30 Jul) which tells the true stories of four LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex) people, all asylum seekers and refugees living in the UK. Over eight months, they participated in a series of workshops at the Young Vic led by director Ian Rickson and in partnership with charity Micro Rainbow International. Now, working with award-winning poet and spoken word artist Deanna Rodger, four actors will bring these important stories of intolerance, belonging and courage to the Young Vic’s Clare studio. The strictly limited run of performances will be free to attend. To book tickets, click here. We are welcoming donations to two charities, Micro Rainbow International and Room to Heal, chosen by our collaborators which work with refugees in the UK. Donations can be give online when booking free tickets or at our box office.

Previously announced work in the Horizons programme includes Queens of Syria, a multimedia production featuring an all-female cast of Syrian performing a new version of The Trojan Women, to the background of the award-winning documentary of their story. Queens of Syria is performed in Arabic and will tour the UK following its opening at the Young Vic (5 – 9 July). And A Man of Good Hope, co-produced with South Africa’s Isango Ensemble and the Royal Opera House, brings to life Jonny Steinberg’s extraordinary book about one refugee’s journey from Mogadishu to Cape Town. A Man of Good Hope runs at the Young Vic from 6 Oct – 12 Nov. Tickets for both shows are on sale now.

We’re also excited to announce that pioneering theatre company Good Chance will have a new base here at the Young Vic. As the company prepares to develop and continue its work with refugees, it will receive support from the Young Vic team. Joe and Joe said:
“We are thrilled to be working with the Young Vic. Having a home is so important. We know this from the people we work with. We are thankful to the Young Vic for giving us a home in London as we strive to build new theatres of hope.”

We are also delighted to receive a Theatre of Sanctuary Award from City of Sanctuary. The Award recognises our past and current endeavours to raise awareness of refugee communities and to take action to welcome and include them in its activities.
Amongst other projects in recent months, in April 2016 the Young Vic hosted the free-to-attend Beyond Borders conference in association with Counterpoints Arts and Platforma. The day provided a chance for artists and companies to hear about the Young Vic’s work with refugees and asylum seekers and to open up discussions on wider themes including pathways for artists from refugee and migrant backgrounds, how participatory work can link to a theatre’s programming, and international connections between artists.
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More on our Horizons announcement here: www.youngvic.org/horizons

New YV signage | transgender + non-binary inclusive

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Last we week we unveiled new signage for our public toilet facilities as part of our building wide commitment to diversity. 

The Young Vic celebrates and the values the diversity of individuals and is committed to creating an environment where all staff, artists and visitors are treated with respect and dignity. We continue to work towards the removal of unfair or discriminatory practices within the company and actively engage with different groups in our community in order to bring about positive change.

As such, we feel very strongly about the discrimination against transgender people which in some American states has resulted in passing bills that police the use of bathrooms for transgender and gender nonconforming people. Gender segregated bathrooms are often a site of harassment for those whose gender expression doesn’t fit neatly with societal norms and, with the safety and convenience of trans men, women and people with non-binary genders in mind, we recognise that people should have safe access to our toilet facilities.

We used the Silvia Riviera Law Project‘s public resource Toilet Training which details key problems with gender segregated bathrooms and advice on improving your facilities. The Young Vic aims to be a trans and non-binary inclusive space and by acknowledging our changes we hope to open the conversation across London’s arts spaces.

Beyond the bathroom signage, with the advice of members of the local LGBTQI+ community we have also revised the gender question on our job application form to allow individuals to self-define their gender identity. We started with:

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And ended with:

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We continue to engage with LGBTQI+ groups in Lambeth and Southwark as part of our Two Boroughs Project led by our Taking Part team and we hope that our work in our local neighbourhood, alongside the rest of the Young Vic programme will continue to bring these people’s stories and journeys to a wider audience.

We care about what you think and are we appreac. If you have any comments or further questions, please email nastasiatryphonos@youngvic.org. We remain committed to LGBTQI+ equality and continue to work towards a more inclusive, open space generally. We hope that other arts organisations will also take steps to make their buildings more welcoming.