The welcome trend of turning attention to Williams’ lesser-known work of the late 50s and early 60s continues, with Williams' strange and disturbing play Night of the Iguana coming to the Noel Coward Theatre from July. James Macdonald, known for his work premiering bold new plays by Sarah Kane and Caryl Churchill, is to direct.
First premiered on Broadway in 1961 and adapted into John Huston’s movie of 1964 with Richard Burton and Ava Gardner, the play is a definite star attraction. Clive Owen, known for film roles like Closer and Children of Men, as well as for his TV role in Hemingway and Gellhorn, is to take the lead role. He plays defrocked Reverend T. Lawrence Shannon, who, kicked out of his church in Virginia for some religious disagreements, has travelled to Mexico. There he searches for some kind of redemption, but ends up working as a guide for a second-rate travel agency. Leading a group of respectable Texan ladies round important sites, the Reverand becomes embroiled in complications with the teenage Charlotte and the leader of the ladies, the formidable Judith Fellowes.
Expect some of the staples of Williams’ passionate work, this time played out whilst a tropical rainstorm thunders around the dive hotel Costa Verde in Mexico. Claustrophobic tensions run high in the boiling heat, as flesh, faith, spirit and desire struggle for supremacy.
There is certainly cause for excitement given that Owen has not appeared on the London stage since 1998 as part of the cast of Patrick Marber’s National Theatre production of Closer. Owen heads a cast however that also includes Lia Williams, who starred in Mary Stuart last year and in 2016’s The Missing for BBC, Anna Gunn of Breaking Bad fame, and Julian Glover, perhaps best known at the moment for Game of Thrones.
With such a strong and varied cast, and the prospect seeing another of Williams' hot and humid plays, Night of Iguana is likely to be a fast sell.
Public booking opens on Friday 8 February, but Culture Whisper readers can access the pre-sale early booking.
|What||Night of the Iguana, Noel Coward Theatre|
|Where||Noel Coward Theatre, St Martin's Lane, London, WC2N 4AU | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Leicester Square (underground)|
06 Jul 19 – 28 Sep 19, 7:30 PM – 10:00 PM
|Website||Click here to book tickets|