The Young Vic in the West End: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

We are over the moon to announce our latest show for the West End. Sienna Miller and Jack O’Connell will star in Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, directed by Benedict Andrews. #YoungVicCat opens at the Apollo Theatre 13 July 2017.

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The truth hurts. On a steamy night in Mississippi, a Southern family gather at their cotton plantation to celebrate Big Daddy’s birthday.  The scorching heat is almost as oppressive as the lies they tell.  Brick and Maggie dance round the secrets and sexual tensions that threaten to destroy their marriage. With the future of the family at stake, which version of the truth is real – and which will win out?

Sienna Miller stars as Maggie alongside Jack O’Connell as Brick. A return to the stage for director Benedict Andrews following his smash hit production of A Streetcar Named Desire. Tennessee Williams’ searing, poetic story of a family’s fight for survival is a twentieth century masterpiece.

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Sienna Miller (Maggie) trained at the Lee Strasberg Institute in New York.  She was last on stage in the West End as Patricia in Flare Path at the Haymarket Theatre and was previously seen at Wyndham’s Theatre as Celia in As You Like It.  Her New York theatre credits include After Miss Julie, Cabaret, Independence and Cigarettes and Chocolate.  Her many film credits include Live by Night, Mississippi Grind, Layer Cake, Alfie, Casanova, Factory Girl, American Sniper, Foxcatcher, The Edge of Love, G.I. JoeYellow and the forthcoming The Lost City of Z.  On television her credits include The Girl, Bedtime and Keen Eddie.

 

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Jack O’Connell (Brick) was last seen on stage in The Nap at Sheffield Crucible Theatre.  His other theatre credits include Scarborough for the Royal Court and The Spiderman, The Musicians and Just for NT Shell Connections.  His film work has garnered him multiple awards, including the 2015 EE BAFTA Rising Star Award, the New Hollywood Award and the Chopard Trophy Award at the Cannes Film Festival.  Most recently, his project Home won the BAFTA for British Short Film in 2017.  His other film credits include Money Monster, 300: Rise of an Empire, Unbroken, ’71, Starred Up, Liability, Private Peaceful, Tower Block, Weekender, Wayfaring Stranger, Eden Lake and Black Dog.  O’Connell will next be seen on screen in Tulip Fever, The Man with the Iron Heart as well as starring in the Netflix TV series Godless.  His television credits include Skins, United, The Runaway, This is England, Dive and Wuthering Heights.

For the Young Vic, Benedict Andrews has previously directed his own version of Three Sisters, which won the London Critics’ Circle Best Director Award, and A Streetcar Named Desire, with Gillian Anderson and Ben Foster, which transferred to New York in 2016.  His first production for the Young Vic was Monteverdi’s The Return of Ulysses, a co-production with ENO – where he has also directed La Boheme and Detlev Glanert’s Caligula.  His many directing credits for Sydney Theatre Company include The Maids with Cate Blanchett and Isabelle Huppert, which toured to the Lincoln Centre Festival in New York; and Big and Small which came to the Barbican, also starring Cate Blanchett.  Andrews has also worked extensively at the Schaubühne Berlin, Komische Oper, National Theatre Iceland and Belvoir Street Sydney.  His first feature film, Una, starring Rooney Mara and Ben Mendelsohn, premiered at the 2016 Telluride Film Festival and will be released later this year.

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof  will play at the Apollo Theatre, 31 Shaftesbury Avenue, London W1D 7ES, 13 July – 7 October 2017. For more info and to book tickets, click here.

All photography by Charlie Gray

What’s your name and where do you come from? 💘 YV Blind Date 💘

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An artist’s impression of what love at the Young Vic might look like

“Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind,
And therefore is winged Cupid painted blind.”
– A Midsummer Night’s Dream

This Valentine’s Day, we’re playing Cupid. We’re offering 6 lucky contestants the opportunity to be set up on a blind date by the Young Vic’s expert matchmaking services*.

You’ll get a free drink in The Cut Bar while you get to know your one-and-only, and then settle down in the dark together to watch A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

True love might bloom, maybe you’ll have a new theatre companion for life, or maybe you’ll just have a fun night out on us. All we ask of you, is that you take a selfie together, fill in our post-date survey, and let us write it up on the blog.

Applications are now open, and you have until midday 17 Feb to send us the following:

  1. Name
  2. Age
  3. The gender you identify with
  4. The gender you would like to be set up with
  5. An emoji that best describes your personality

To: marketing@youngvic.org with the subject line ‘YV Blind Date’.

💋

*Marketing team

11 Questions with the cast of See Me Now – Pan

PAN is pangender, pansexual, pandemonium, Pandora’s Box.
Pan is a non-binary, non-obligatory human rights fetishist.
Pan is an author, a lover, an artist and a muse.
Pan is some people’s dream and others worst nightmare.
Pan is you, her, him, she, he , it, they….
PAN’s motto is WHAT WOULD LOVE DO?

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If you could only eat one ‘Penny Sweet’ for the rest of your life, what would it be?

A fried egg sweetie.

What is one common misconception about the sex industry you would like to change?

That it’s seedy. Sex is natural and healing.

What is one thing you would like people to know about sex work? 

It involves a lot of dressing up, backstage nerves and performance!

Is this your first time working in theatre? What’s it been like?

It’s been tiring, I will stick to domination!

Descibe the See Me Now rehearsal room vibes in three words (or emojis).

Blood, sweat, tears.

What did you want to be growing up?

A woman.

If days were 28 hours long, what would you do with the 4 extra hours?

Sleep.

What’s your favourite song and why?

Grace Jones, Libertango – I can relate!

What’s your favourite play or movie you’ve ever seen?

The Hunger, with Catherine Deneuve. Where she says ‘Please call me Margot’. It’s so camp!

If you could have one supernatural power which would you choose and why?

I’m already supernatural.

Do you think you will want to continue being involved in theatre after this production?

I would love to.

Pan stars in See Me Now  which runs 11 Feb – 4 Mar in the Young Vic’s Maria. Tickets for this production are all sold out but you are welcome to join our returns queues from an hour before each performance. Find more information on See Me Now here

11 Questions with the cast of A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Leo Bill

You may have seen him before in the Young Vic’s The Glass Menagerie, or one of his many other stage and screen appearances, ladies and gentlemen it’s your Bottom … I mean Leo Bill, and his 11 Questions. 

Young Vic production ofA Midsummer Night's Dream Directed by Joe Hill-Gibbins

Leo Bill in rehearsal for AMND – photograph Keith Pattison

Describe your character in A Midsummer Night’s Dream in three emojis?

😕⚠✊

What’s it been like working with Joe Hill-Gibbins?

It’s a scary and exposing process but all the more exciting for it. It’s in at the deep end stuff from day one but the levels of trust in the room are super high.

Which Dream character would you pick as your Valentine

Titania. I mean that’d be a night!

What was it that first got you interested in the theatre?

My mum and dad were actors when I was growing up. We ended up in a lot of dressing rooms after shows of their mates. That always seemed fun. My dad was also a writer so I used to spend time sat at the back in rehearsal rooms.

What is your favourite play (seen, read or worked on)?

I think that constantly changes.Recently it’d be Kings of War by Toneelgroep Amsterdam at Barbican and Love by Alex Zeldin at NT.

You’re hosting a dinner party. Who are your 3 dream guests? 

Vincent Gallo, Diane Arbus and John Cazale

There’s a common conception that hearing about other people’s dreams are boring. Tell us about your least-boring dream. 😴 zzzz

I don’t really remember my dreams. (#mostdepressingcommentihaveevermade)

If you hadn’t become an actor, what job would you be doing now?

Director. Or weirdly, interior designer.

Who is your ultimate hero and why?

John Cazale. I have a tattoo of his name on my arm, his dedication to pushing others to be the best they can inspires me and in times of artistic strife it reminds me to ask “what would John do?”…… He rarely answers.

If you could have any one supernatural power which would you choose and why?

Eternal life with the added power of ditching it when I want. I totally know the world’s only gonna get worse but it’d chill out my deep fear of death.

What are you usually doing 10 minutes before the show begins?

Wishing I wasn’t an actor.

Leo Bill appears in A Midsummer Night’ s Dream in the YV Main House, 16 Feb – 1 April. For more information and to book, click here

YV’s arms are open – we are a Theatre of Sanctuary

The Young Vic is proud to be a Theatre of Sanctuary. Our doors are always open to refugees.

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In 2016 we at the YV extended our commitment to raising awareness of the plight of refugees with our Horizons season which will continue this year with Taha in July and The Suppliant Women in November.

Also last year we became the first London Theatre of Sanctuary, as awarded by City of Sanctuary.

David Lan, our Artistic Director, said of Horizons: “We are responding 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.”

We hope that being a Theatre of Sanctuary will help us to encourage more of our new neighbours to visit our theatre, making the Young Vic an important part of their new home.

In order to become a Theatre of Sanctuary, the Young Vic had to show written evidence of three key principles: that as a company we had enhanced our knowledge of asylum issues,  that we had embedded a culture of welcome into our professional community and that we had shared our learning with others.

City of Sanctuary is a movement committed to building a culture of hospitality and welcome, especially for refugees seeking sanctuary from war and persecution. Their motto is: “Wherever refugees go, we want them to feel safe and find people who will welcome them.” – an important philosophy in these times.

Find out more about City of Sanctuary and how you can help here.

11 questions with the cast of A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Aaron Heffernan

Aaron Heffernan joins us in our virtual 11 Questions booth today providing some of the most surprising answers we’ve ever encountered. Aaron plays Francis Flute in upcoming A Midsummer Night’s Dream, which is also his YV debut.

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Describe your character in A Midsummer Night’s Dream in three emojis?

🚹 ⏭ 🚺

What’s it been like working with Joe Hill-Gibbins?

This is my first time working with big JHG and I think I speak for the whole cast when I say it’s been a terrifyingly totalitarian, spirit-shattering experience. The process is solely based around breaking the acting company down psychologically as individuals and peeling back the layers of physical and mental strength that our life experiences have afforded us to date. So by learning and performing words from an old, old story we are expected to really expose the weak and transparent fallibility of the disgusting stain that is the human soul. Which I honesty feel is going quite well?

Which Dream character would you pick as your Valentine ❤ and why? 

From all the wonderful characters of the Dream narrative I would have to choose Puck as my Valentine if it came to it. And it’s not just because he’s the only other Irish actor in the cast. Not only would he be good craic but on the night, if the date was going sour and I realised I wasn’t into his buzz he could just whip out his magic little flower and squeeze some of its sweet love juice into my cocktail and I’d be head-over-heels with his witty nymphish quips and rough Northern charm in no time. 

What was it that first got you interested in the theatre?

Having been reared by my parents on an eclectic diet of the best music, television and film spanning the last four centuries and amidst the many galaxies of stimulating art forms that cosmically spun trough my mind as a young man, I remember that it was when I was taken to see France’s Footsbarn Theatre Company perform in a tent on a metal frame suspended on Dublin’s River Liffey that initially set my burning hunger for theatre ablaze. I was around 11 or 12 years old and seeing this travelling troupe of virtuosic performers dancing, jamming, acting and puppeteering back & forth and up & down the straw-peppered floors of the big-top circus tent was mind-blowing. Now I co-run a dance-choreographing, music-making, scene-writing and, most of all, puppeteering travelling theatre troupe of my own, expeditions of which include tours in Ireland, Scotland, London, Moscow and New York; and gratitude for which I afford to Footsbarn. It was this consistent artistic excitement that my family and school teachers provided that kept me in the game.

What is your favourite play (seen, read or worked on)?

My favourite play to watch is any one of the many plays I’ve done that have been recorded so I can watch the footage of myself in plays that I’ve been in. As for my favourite play to read, I’d say that would have to be Of Mice & Men by John Steinbeck. It’s a novel, I know, but… I like to read it like a play and imagine the school production I saw in my formative years as a young man looking up to my older, less talented peers. My favourite play to be in is anything Shakespeare or anything with puppets, and my favourite song is Chasin’ Waterfalls by TLC.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream rehearsal 05 © Keith Pattison.jpg(L to R): Joe Hill-Gibbins, Aaron Heffernan & Michaela Barth in rehearsal for A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Photo by Keith Pattison. 

 

There’s a common conception that hearing about other people’s dreams are boring. Tell us about your least-boring dream. 😴 zzzz

The most exciting, most recent & least boring dream of mine took place last Wednesday and, as ever, saw me firing arrows made from hard pasta at bottles of sausages while riding bareback atop an androgynous centaur. But when I dismount the beast it turns into a melting oil painting of Theresa May.

If you hadn’t become an actor, what job would you be doing now?

In this bizarre upside-down world of backwards ridiculousness that sees me doing something other than this, if I wasn’t acting myself I would be teaching speech, drama and stagecraft to non-humanoid species. The thrill of seeing wild and dangerous animals like dolphins or spiders performing passages from Richard III or All My Sons can be the only logical next step in western entertainment.

Who is your ultimate hero and why?

Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson is my ultimate hero as his trajectory is a masterclass in relentless hard work and unflinching genre-spanning brand management. I would love to morph into him for a day/year.

If you could have any one supernatural power which would you choose and why?

The superpower of being able to morph into Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson for a day/year.

What are you usually doing 10 minutes before the show begins?

10 minutes before the show I will be most likely looking in the mirror or if there are no mirrors near me then I will be looking in my reflection in the reverse-angle camera of my phone. 

Okay, so this is actually only 10 Questions because Aaron’s dinner party guests answer is lost in the ether, but we’re on the hunt for it so watch this space! In the mean time, check out the A Midsummer Night’s Dream rehearsal pictures, and book your tickets now to see Aaron and the rest of the cast in the Main House 16 Feb – 1 Apr.

Yerma to be broadcast through NT Live

We’re delighted to announce that 2016’s biggest hit Yerma will be broadcast live to the world through the power of NT Live on Thursday 31 August, with encore screenings to follow at some cinemas. 

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Billie Piper in Yerma – Photograph by Johan Perrson

Following the huge success of NT Live’s broadcast of A View From the Bridge and A Streetcar Named Desire, we’re thrilled that another Young Vic show will shooting out across the world. Last year Yerma had queues round the block, and we are very pleased to be able to share the opportunity to see it with thousands more.  You can watch the trailer for the show here.

National Theatre Live performances are broadcast via satellite to over 1500 venues in over 40 different countries, live in Europe and some US cities, and time-delayed in countries further afield. For cinema tickets and venue information, visit ntlive.com.

Yerma returns to the Young Vic for a limited run 26 July – 31 August. Priority booking is now open, with Public booking opening Wednesday 1 February at 10am.