We may have endured a sub-zero start to the year, but there’s always solace to be found in peering into the months in the middle of the year. Sure, that may mean frolicking around London Fields before finding a spot to lie prone with a cold drink to some, but for others, it means a stacked lineup at London’s busiest theatres.
The National Theatre’s latest summer season announcement won’t leave anyone inclined this way disappointed, with highlights that include Boys From The Blackstuff and The Grapes of Wrath. It also could well mark Rufus Norris’ final summer show announcements, with the National Theatre director due to step down from his role in mid-2025 before Indhu Rubasingham starts the position.
What has The National Theatre announced for Summer 2024?
As previously mentioned, one of the most highly-anticipated arrivals at the National Theatre for the summer is the on-stage adaptation of Boys From The Blackstuff, originally a TV Show in the 1980s set in Liverpool and documenting unemployment levels during the Margaret Thatcher years.
The adaptation was written by James Graham, the name on the lips of many right now due to his work on Dear England, and was originally shown at Liverpool Royal Court. It’ll run at the Olivier in London from May 22 – June 8.
John Steinbeck’s seminal The Grapes Of Wrath will also hit the stage at the Lyttleton Theatre. It brings back the award-winning Frank Galati adaptation and will follow the Joad family on their journey from Oklahoma to California during the Great Depression, running between July 17 – September 14. US actor Cherry Jones has already been cast as Ma Joad, and more names are due to follow.
Also taking to the Olivier Theatre is Mnemonic by Complicité , which returns to the stage 25 years after it first hit the National Theatre in a production that questions our place in the natural world and where we came from.
A Pulitzer-prize winning comedy, The Hot Wing King, is also due to set up shop at the Dorfman theatre this summer, running from July 11-September 14). The play follows Cordell (Kadiff Kirwan), and his team as they gear up to enter the Memphis hot wing festival.
Tickets go on sale for these summer performances at the National Theatre on February 8. Find out more and book your spot here.