Royal Court announces autumn/winter 2017/18 season

Reporter: Robin Johnson, first published Mon 10 Jul 2017 10:24
KW2017 - Royal Court exterior (Photo: Stephen Cummiskey)The Royal Court (Photo: Stephen Cummiskey)/servlet/file/store5/item395268/version2/fileservice770/395268_770_preview.jpg

The Royal Court has announced its new autumn/winter 2017/18 season of work which includes five world premieres, five international playwrights from Argentina, Chile, Syria, Ukraine and the USA, and the return of a landmark Royal Court play.

The Royal Court 2017/18 season

The season opens with the exciting return of Royal Court Theatre/LIFT co-production Minefield (Thursday 2 November – Saturday 11 November 2017), a sold-out favourite at the venue in 2016. Lola Arias' play sees six Falklands and Malvinas war veterans face each other across the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs stage, having once faced each other across a battlefield, sharing memories, films, songs and photos with brutal honesty and startling humour.

Ukrainian playwright Natal'ya Vorozhbit also returns to the Royal Court with the world premiere of Bad Roads (Wednesday 15 November – Saturday 23 December), a powerful and bitterly comic account of what it is to be a woman in wartime, directed by Artistic Director Vicky Featherstone in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs.

The world premiere of Syrian playwright Liwaa Yazji’s play Goats (Friday 24 November – Saturday 30 December) then follows in the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs, telling the story of a small town in Syria nourished on propaganda, while temporary theatre space The Site, next door to the Sloane Square venue, will host Grimly Handsome (Wednesday 6 December – Saturday 23 December) by Julia Jarcho, an award-winning thriller which explores the violent margins of an unnamed American city.

In the new year, the debut play by Anoushka Warden, My Mum’s A T**t (Monday 8 January 2018 – Saturday 20 January) - one teenage girl’s funny, frank and true account of losing her Mum to a cult - will be directed by Featherstone in the Upstairs space, and Max Stafford-Clark’s touring revival of romantic fling comedy Rita, Sue And Bob Too (Tuesday 9 January 2018 – Saturday 27 January) will play in the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs.

Simon Longman’s bereavement drama Gundog (Wednesday 31 January 2018 – Saturday 10 March) is next in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs, also directed by Featherstone.

Downstairs, Matilda The Musical’s Dennis Kelly will return to the Royal Court with new play Girls & Boys (Thursday 8 February – Saturday 10 March), with Lyndsey Turner (best known for Posh at the Royal Court, Hamlet at the Barbican and Chimerica at the Almeida) directing the production, which centres on a passionate married life which spirals out of control.

Finally, a play which centres on walkers in the Peak District, Black Men Walking (Wednesday 21 March – Saturday 7 April), will play in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs. Dedicated to the titular group, the play is directed by Eclipse Theatre’s Artistic Director Dawn Walton and is part of Revolution Mix, an ambitious body of work which aims to enrich the canon of British theatre with untold British stories. 

The season announcement also revealed that the second series of Playwright’s Podcast, which sees writers interviewed by Simon Stephens, will be released this autumn.

Commenting on the new season, Artistic Director Vicky Featherstone said: “Having had an extraordinary first half of 2017 at the Royal Court where some of Britain’s major world class theatre artists have made remarkable, landmark work, this autumn we invite emerging writers from across the world to make radical new work for Britain.”

“From Syria, Ukraine, Argentina and the US, these writers - all women - are writing about conflict, radicalism and justice.”

“It is impossible not to work in both a global and local context in these complex times. This season aspires to give audiences voices from both.”

Tickets for the new season will go on sale to the general public on Thursday 13 July at 10am through the venue’s website.