Follow Us on Twitter

The Hothouse - Simon Russell Beale and John Simm star

Simon Russell Beale as King Arthur

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

JAMIE Lloyd’s second production in a season of work for Trafalgar Transformed will be Harold Pinter’s macabre tragicomedy, The Hothouse, which runs at the Whitehall venue from May 4 to August 3, 2013.

The production will star Simon Russell Beale and John Simm.

The day got off to a lousy start! A death and a birth. Absolutely bloody scandalous! Is it too much to ask – to keep the place clean?

The Hothouse is set on Christmas Day in a nameless state-run mental institution where the inmates are subjected to a tirade of mindless cruelty. A maniacal and self-obsessed leader breeds a contagion of hierarchical savagery amongst his staff, who thrive on a noxious diet of delusion and deceit.

Pinter’s biting political commentary on the perils of unchecked power is as vital and pertinent today as when it was written in the 50s.

Simon Russell Beale has worked extensively for the National Theatre, where his credits include Collaborators, London Assurance, Major Barbara, Much Ado About Nothing, The Alchemist and The Life of Galileo. Elsewhere, his credits include Privates on Parade (Noel Coward Theatre), King Arthur in Spamalot (Broadway and West End), The Winter’s Tale and The Cherry Orchard (New York and Old Vic) and Bluebird (New York).

John Simm’s stage credits include Elling (Bush Theatre/Trafalgar Studios), Speaking in Tongues (Duke of York’s Theatre) and Hamlet and Betrayal (Sheffield Theatres). He is also well known for his television appearances – in Life on Mars (as Sam Tyler), Doctor Who, Exile, The Devil’s Whore, Mad Dogs and The Village.

The Hothouse was first performed at Hampstead Theatre in 1980.

Jamie Lloyd’s inaugural production in the Trafalgar Transformed season, Macbeth starring James McAvoy, continues until April 27, 2013.