The tide of change is coming. Madam Ranyevskaya’s liberal world of privilege and pleasure is beginning to show cracks, but she and her family live on in denial.
Lopakhin wants to rescue Ranyevskaya. The hard-working son of one of her family’s serfs, his new-found wealth can offer shelter and security to the woman he has loved since boyhood, but it will come at a high price.
Meanwhile, revolution hangs in the air, the poor and hungry are pushing at the doors, and the tutor Trofimov predicts a tumultuous change for everybody.
Chekhov’s final masterpiece is full of wild humour and piercing sadness in this fresh, funny and honest new translation by award-winning playwright Rory Mullarkey. A portrait of changing times, it maps the building tensions between the desperate longing to hold onto what is familiar and the restless lure of the new. A civilised and complacent culture is on the brink of collapse…
Michael Boyd, lauded former artistic director of the Royal Shakespeare Company, was a trainee director in Moscow at the start of his career, and only now directs his first Chekhov play. With a unique ‘in the round’ design created by Tom Piper (designer of the poppy installation at the Tower of London in 2014), the theatre will be transformed into a full circle of seating allowing audiences to experience every part of this rich and rewarding masterpiece up-close and from every angle.
Kirsty Bushell (King Lear, Chichester Festival Theatre; Antigone, Barbican) and Jude Owusu (A Tale of Two Cities, Regent’s Park; Julius Caesar, RSC) lead the ensemble in this vivid new production.