It’s not often that a sequel surpasses— or even matches— it’s predecessor. But Michael Longhurst’s second season as Artistic Director of the Donmar Warehouse proves that such rarities do in fact exist. After an incredible debut last year, Longhurst is back with a bang and the newly-announced 2020 season is set to impress with four showstopping new productions.
From exciting UK premieres to thought-provoking revivals, Longhurst offers up a diverse variety of shows. The season opens with a brilliant production from Pulitzer Prize-winner Suzan-Lori Parks. In The Blood (Apr 17-June 6) is a modern riff on Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter. Parks’ work is an exploration of both an epic and personal scale. In a world that refuses to let a young mother succeed, how far will Hester go to provide for her children?
The Donmar follow In the Blood with a revival of Steve Waters’ highly acclaimed double-bill, The Contingency Plan (June 10-Aug 1), in a timely co-production with Theatr Clwyd. The plays, which offer a funny and thrilling exploration of the climate crisis, have been updated to grapple with recent news and developments. In a brilliant initiative, the Donmar Warehouse will also work with Julie’s Bicycle on this play, consulting with their leading sustainability experts to ensure that the co-production is made in a sustainable way. For a piece of work that does more than just talk the talk, look to The Contingency Plan.
Alongside, and in response, to The Contingency Plan the newly-formed Donmar Local company will explore visions of a climate positive future in Assembly (July 12- July 13). Written by Nina Segal and directed by Joseph Hancock, this show is about working together to build a better future. A reactive deep dive into navigating the aftermath of a global climate crisis.
Finally, the season concludes with an ambitious adaptation of Ruben Östlund’s critically-acclaimed film Force Majeure (Aug 7-Sept 26), written by Tim Price. A brilliant black comedy, this is a story about one family’s carefully constructed world being turned upside down. Tomas and Ebba just want to spend quality time with their children when they head to the Alps on a skiing holiday, but when disaster strikes, hilarious and tragic consequences ensue. Directed by Michael Longhurst, this show is not one to miss.
If you’re keen to see some Donmar shows, you’ll be happy to know that the Donmar Warehouse have a couple of great schemes in place to help get you through the doors. For instance, Donmar Daily Release is back for a second year! This scheme ensures that a minimum of 40 tickets are made available each morning for selected performances happening in the next week. The brilliant YOUNG+FREE scheme is also worth checking out. If you’re under 26, you can join the ballot and have a chance to nab some free tickets, funded by the generosity of the Donmar’s audiences. Public booking for all four productions opens on Wednesday Feb 5, with tickets available from just £10. Don’t miss out on this glorious new season!
Find the Donmar Warehouse at 41 Earlham Street, Seven Dials, WC2H 9LX. You can see the full programme and book tickets on their website.