Go Between | Taking Part

Go Between was a Taking Part community show inspired by Isango Ensemble’s A Man of Good Hope. The beautiful collaboration between director Anna Girvan, writer Archie Maddocks and participants who are currently homeless or have experienced homelessness in the past explored what home means to all of us.

The show was inspired by the 30 members of the “creative, passionate, witty and optimistic” company and their own experiences, drawn together through workshops and sessions over 4 months, since September 2016.

Go Between also featured a photography exhibition by Jordan Lee, a photographer who spent 3 months with the company documenting the process from devising and rehearsals to the full production. The stunning exhibition was open to all at Platform Southwark and was visited by audiences and participants alike.

Anna said, “We hope that this production will give an insight to how we are all just people, people who want to love, live, experience life, shout, stomp, sit in silence, be challenged and listened to, respected and deserve that basic human right; a home.”

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. 

 

The Bear | The Proposal – Cast Annoucment

We are thrilled to announce the casting for Genesis Future Directors Award winner Lucy J Skilbeck’s The Bear | The Proposal, written by Anton Chekhov and translated by Michael Frayn.  The cast includes George Ikediashi, Kamari Romeo and Rebecca Root. Get to know the cast of this stirring new production below.

The Bear | The Proposal runs at the Young Vic 16 – 25 March. Tickets for The Bear | The Proposal are sold out, but you’re welcome to join the returns queue from 7pm for evening shows and 3pm for matinees.

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George Ikediashi 
Returns to the Young Vic after performing in Tobias and the Angel in 2006.
Theatre credits include: Threepenny Opera (National Theatre), Porgy & Bess (Regent’s Park Open Air), Peter Pan (Theatre Lighthouse), Hair (OId Market), Jesus Christ Superstar, La Cage Aux Folles (Theatre Royal Brighton).Opera Credits include: Imago (Glynderbourne), Varjak Paw (Royal Opera House) and La Traviata (Barn Theatre).kamari-small-headshots-kamari22907-2016

Kamari Romeo
Theatre credits include: Whisper Me Happy Ever After (Face Front Theatre Company), At The Feet of Jesus (Theatre Royal Stratford East), Elemental (Bush Theatre), Sequin Deep (Theatre N16), The Jungle Book (Emporium Brighton) and Alice in Wonderland (The Minack Theatre).

rebecca-rootRebecca Root
Theatre includes:  Trans Scripts (Pleasance Courtyard and American Repertory Theatre), Tartuffe (Pentameters Theatre). Film includes: The Danish Girl. Television includes: Boy Meets Girl, Hank Zipzer, Doctors, Celebrity Mastermind, Hollyoaks and Midsomer Murders. Short films include: Eddie/Elise and Sis.

 

GENESIS FOUNDATION

Established by John Studzinski 15 years ago, the Genesis Foundation works in partnership with the leaders of prestigious UK arts organisations such as the Royal Court, The Sixteen, Welsh National Opera and the Young Vic. Its largest funding commitment is to programmes that support directors, playwrights and musicians in the early stages of their professional lives.

In addition it awards scholarships to exceptional student actors at LAMDA and commissions stimulating new works, from choral compositions to light installations.

In 2015 the Genesis Foundation launched its first partnership outside the UK, funding residencies for playwrights at New York’s Signature Theatre.

Lucy J Skilbeck is the eighth  recipient of the Genesis Future Directors Award, following Ola Ince (2016), Bryony Shanahan (2016), Rikki Henry (2015), Finn Beames (2014), Tinuke Craig (2014), Matthew Xia (2013) and Ben Kidd (2012).

The Bear The Proposal  directed by Lucy J Skilbeck runs 15 – 25 March in the Young Vic’s Claire.  

New Season Announcement: Young Vic 2017 Season – Time to make some noise.

We’re not doing 2017 by halves, we’re over the moon (you’ll get that in a minute) to announce seven new shows in our 2017 line up.

In the Main House it’s the season of creative returns: Joe Wright returns to the Young Vic with Life Of Galileo after his acclaimed production of A Season of the Congo.  Sell-out sensation, Yerma is back for a limited run. The incredible team behind Happy Days reunites for Wings, directed by Natalie Abrahami. And, The Suppliant Women brings back Ramin Gray, after Living with the Lights on. Over in the studios we have Taha, Nina and How to Win Against HistoryFind out more on all the shows below.

Life of Galileo ( 6 May – 24 Jun)

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BAFTA Award-winning film director Joe Wright (Atonement, Anna Karenina) returns to the Young Vic after his celebrated production of A Season in the Congo, with Brendan Cowell in the title role following his acclaimed performance in Yerma.

Galileo makes an explosive discovery about the universe with his new invention – the telescope. The establishment is in an uproar over his powerful challenge to their worldview and their entrenched religious beliefs.

Brecht’s masterpiece will be performed in-the-round on a stunning set designed by Lizzie Clachan (Yerma, A Season in the Congo) and with projections by 59 Productions (Feast, War Horse).

Life of Galileo by Bertolt Brecht, translated by John Willett, runs 6 May – 24 June 2017 in the Young Vic’s Main House. It is directed by Joe Wright with design by Lizzie Clachan, video by Lysander Ashton for 59 Productions, light by Jon Clark,  sound by Tom Gibbons, puppet direction by Sarah Wright and dramaturgy by Sarah Tipple. With Brendan Cowell and more to be announced.

Yerma (26 Jul – 31 Aug)

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★★★★★
‘An extraordinary theatrical triump’ – The Times

★★★★★
‘A shatteringly powerful reinvention of a familiar classic’ – The Independent

★★★★★ – The Observer, Evening Standard, Metro, Mail on Sunday, The Sun, iNews

2016’s biggest hit returns for a strictly limited run. The extraordinary Billie Piper plays Her, a woman driven to the unthinkable by her desperate desire to have a child.

Simon Stone creates a radical new production of Lorca’s achingly powerful masterpiece.

Yerma by Simon Stone after Federico García Lorca runs 26 July – 31 August in the Young Vic’s Main House. It is directed by Simon Stone with design by Lizzie Clachan, costumes by Alice Babidge, light by James Farncombe, music & sound Stefan Gregory, video by Jack Henry James, casting by Julian Horan CDG. With, Maureen Beattie, Brendan Cowell, John MacMillan, Billie Piper and Charlotte Randle. 

Yerma is now sold out. We will be running returns queues on the day from an hour before each performance. Find more information on NT Live screenings here.  

Wings (14 September – 28 October) 

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Juliet Stevenson takes on yet another extraordinary role.  Emily was a fiercely independent woman, an aviator and a wingwalker, until a stroke destroyed her sense of reality. Fragments of her life come together as she struggles to find her voice and herself.

The hugely successful collaborators from  Happy Days reunites with director Natalie Abrahami.

Wings by Arthur Kopit runs 14 September – 28 October in the Young Vic’s Main House. It is directed by Natalie Abrahami with design by Michael Levine, light by Guy Hoare, sound by Gareth Fry and movement by Anna Morrisey. With Juliet Stevenson and more to be announced. 

The Suppliant Women ( 13 – 25 November)

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★★★★★
‘An epic, feminist protest song’ – The Guardian

“If we help, we invite trouble.
If we don’t, we invite shame.”

Fifty women leave everything behind to board a boat in North Africa and fl ee across the Mediterranean. They are escaping forced marriage in their homeland, hoping for protection and assistance, seeking asylum in Greece.

Written 2,500 years ago by the great playwright Aeschylus, one of the world’s oldest plays speaks to us through the ages with startling resonance for our troubled times.

Featuring a chorus of young women from London, this is part play, part ritual. Director Ramin Gray unearths an electric connection to the deepest and most mysterious ideas of the humanity – who are we, where do we belong and if all goes wrong – who will take us in?

An Actors Touring Company, Young Vic and Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh co-production.

The Suppliant Women by Aeschylus, a new version by David Greig, runs 13 – 25 Novemeber in the Young Vic’s Main House. It is directed by Ramin Gray with music by John Browne, choreography by Sasha Milavic Davies, design by Lizzie Clachan andlight by Charles Balfour. With Callum Armstrong, Oscar Batterham, Ben Burton, Omar Ebrahim and Gemma May Rees. 

Taha ( 5 – 15 July)

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All my life, nothing came easy.
Not even becoming a poet.

A lyrical story of the life of Palestinian poet Taha Muhammed Ali, written and performed by Amer Hlhel.

Amir Nizar Zuabi (The Beloved, I Am Yusuf and This Is My Brother), founder of celebrated theatre company ShiberHur, returns to the Young Vic to direct this London premiere.

An Amer Hlehel, Young Vic and Shubbak Festival co-production.

Taha by Amer Hlehel, translated by Amir Nizar Zuabi, runs 5 – 15 July in the Young Vic’s Maria. It is translated and directed by Amir Nizar Suabi with light by Muaz Jubeh and music by Habib Shehadeh Hanna. With Amer Hlehel.

Nina (19 – 29 July)

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A STORY ABOUT ME & NINA SIMONE

★★★★
‘A searing tribute restarts Simone’s revolution’ – The Guardian

Backed by a brilliant band, Josette Bushell-Mingo mixes story and song as she draws together tales from the life of Nina Simone, her own extraordinary career and the Black Lives Matter movement.

Nina devised by Josette Bushell-Mingo and Dritëro Kasapi runs 19 – 29 July in the Young Vic’s Maria. It is directed by Dritëro Kasapi with design by Rosa Maggiora, light by Matt Haskins, musical direction by Shapor Bastansia and dramaturgy by Christina Anderson. With Josette Bushell-Mingo.

Nina is now sold out. We will be running returns queues on the day from an hour before each performance.

How to Win Against History (30 November – 23 December)

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★★★★★
‘This musical about being a cross-dressing Marquess is a work of genius’ – The Daily Telegraph

★★★★
‘Gleeful, luicrous – a larky collision of Gilbert & Sulivan and Monty Python’ – Time Out

The 5th Marquis of Anglesey was one of the world’s wealthiest men, until he lost it all by being too damn fabulous. A riches-to-rags story becomes a hilarious, ripped-up musical in an outrageous performance by Seiriol Davies.

An Aine Flanagan Productions, Seiriol Davies and Young Vic co-production.

How to Win Against History runs 30 November – 23 December in the Young Vic’s Maria. It is directed by Alex Swift with design by Verity Quinn, light by Dan Saggers, musical direction by Dylan Townley, music by Seiriol Davies and dramaturgy by Eve Leigh. With Matthew Blake, Seiriol Davies and Dylan Townley.

Tickets go on sale to the public on Wednesday 1 February  at 10am. You can become a friend and book today at www.youngvic.org

11 Questions with the cast of A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Michael Gould

You may remember Michael Gould from our recent smash-hit “superbly acted” 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟(Metro) A View from the Bridge. Now he’s back playing Theseus/Oberon in Joe Hill Gibbins’ dark and nightmarish take on Shakespeare’s tale of betrayal and desire, A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

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Michael Gould with Mark Strong and the rest of the A View from the Bridge company at the YV in 2014

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

🗣 ⚡️ 💩

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

Fascinating and terrifying!

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

I would pick Cupid, just to get his take on the whole Valentine thing, I know it is a busy day for him but it would be great to chat.

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

Believe it or not, a Young Vic production of Troilus and Cressida in 1975 (or so). I didn’t understand everything but the staging and the words were thrilling!

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

A View From the Bridge at The Young Vic.

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

I would like to invite three characters I have played and find out how the show was for them, did we miss anything, did they feel represented properly etc, did they have any opinions about our interpretation, questions they wanted to ask, did other actors get closer to their truth… – so Alfieri, Iago and, why not, Theseus/Oberon (I know that is four really or is it…?)

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

Don’t be sad, it is a long time ago but my Dad died on Christmas day. That night I dreamt he hitched a ride in Santa’s sleigh, asking to be dropped off at a resting place in the sky!

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

Teaching has always appealed. I have done a bit and I always enjoy it.

Who is your ultimate hero and why?

I am not really a hero kind of person. I think we are a little bit too obsessed by individual glory. I admire great teams, so the 2016 Hockey team I would say are my heroes (currently) and, of course, the glorious ensemble company that is the A Midsummer Night’s Dream Team.

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

Very happy to be able to inhabit Oberon’s Invisibility at the moment, I hear some great gossip and I can influence events in a truly intriguing way.

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

On this show probably having a wee as we are going to be on stage throughout. I did the same on A View From The Bridge and I should probably list “bladder control” as a special skill on my CV.