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Royal Court Jerwood Theatre Upstairs - 2007

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

Dominic Cooke’s first season as Artistic Director of the Royal Court includes three productions, Rough Cuts and a three-month season of international new plays in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs:

Leaves – March 14 to April 7, 2007.

Lori is coming home from her first term at university. It’s only been a few weeks and already things have gone badly wrong. But none of the rest of the family knows, or understands, what really happened.

In this fiercely observed family drama, three teenage girls struggle to define who they are, and why, and where they might be going.

Leaves is written by Lucy Caldwell, a young Belfast-born writer. Her first play, it won the George Devine Award in 2006.

Garry Hynes directs a cast that includes Fiona Bell, Alana Brennan, Conor Lovett, Daisy Maguire, Penelope Maguire and Kathy-Rose O’Brien.

That Face – April 20 to May 19, 2007.

Mia is at boarding school. She has access to drugs. They are Martha’s. Henry is preparing for art college. He has access to alcohol. From Martha. Martha controls their lives. Martha is their mother.

That Face, a hard-hitting, intense and visceral dissection of parent-child relationships, is 20 year-old Polly Stenham’s first play.

Jeremy Herrin directs a cast that includes Lindsay Duncan (as Martha), Felicity Jones (The Archers‘ Emma Carter) and Matt Smith (The History Boys, On the Shore of the Wide World).

Duncan has won two Olivier Awards for Best Actress – for her performances in the RSC’s original production of Les Liaisons Dangereuses and the 2001 West End revival of Private Lives.

Her other theatre credits include Mouth to Mouth, Ashes to Ashes and Top Girls (Royal Court).

Alaska – May 24 to June 23, 2007.

Frank is an ordinary bloke who likes smoking, history and playing House of the Dead 3. He can put up with his job on a cinema kiosk until a new supervisor arrives who is younger than him. And Asian.

Alaska, a play about race, sex and purity, is DC Moore’s first play.

Maria Aberg directs a cast that includes Rafe Spall, Christine Bottomley, Sebastian Armesto, Harry Hepple, Thomas Morrison and Fiona Wade.

Spall’s theatre credits include Just a Bloke (Royal Court), The Knight of the Burning Pestle (RSC), Prayer for Owen Meaney (National Theatre) and most recently, John Gabriel Borkman (Donmar Warehouse).

On screen he has appeared in Dracula, Wide Sargasso Sea, The Chatterley Affair and The Romantics (TV); and Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead and Green Street (film).

Bottomley’s theatre credits include Ladybird (Royal Court), A Single Act and Osama the Hero (both at Hampstead Theatre) and Flush (Soho Theatre).

On television she has appeared in Sea of Souls (as Mary Dunbar), The Innocence Project and The Street.

Rough Cuts – July 2 to July 15, 2007.

Rough Cuts is a new and exciting strand of work-in-progress, created through collaborations between playwrights and directors or other artists. Both established and emerging writers and directors will present extracts from these as part of their journey towards full production.

International New Plays – Autumn 2007.

Three months of new international work which includes the UK premiere of Marius von Mayenburg’s The Ugly One.

For more information call the box office on 020 7565 5000 or visit the website.

See the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs 2007 programme