A ferocious new version of Molière’s comic masterpiece, Tartuffe, by John Donnelly, directed by Blanche McIntyre will open in February in the Lyttelton Theatre. Denis O’Hare makes his NT debut as Tartuffe, and is joined by Kevin Doyle as Orgon and Olivia Williams as Elmire.
Orgon is the man who has everything: money, power, a beautiful home and family. But lately he’s been questioning the point of it all. When he invites the irresistible Tartuffe into his seemingly perfect household, he unleashes a whirlwind of deception and seduction that threatens everything. With Orgon under Tartuffe's spell, can his family outwit this charismatic trickster? Are Tartuffe's wild claims truth or fiction? This mysterious stranger may not be quite the villain he appears. A scalpel-sharp comedy looking at the lengths we go to find meaning – and what happens when we find chaos instead.
Speaking about Tartuffe Blanche McIntrye said ‘John Donnelly’s adaptation is an outrageously funny, savage, brilliant updating of Molière’s classic. Molière spoke fearlessly about power and hypocrisy in Tartuffe - so much so that the play was banned more than once. This new version shifts the weight of the central ideas to entertain and disturb an audience of 2019.’
The cast also includes Kitty Archer, Nathan Armarkwei-Laryea, Fayez Bakhsh, Kathy Kiera Clarke, Hari Dhillon, Matthew Duckett, Susan Engel, Henry Everett, Will Kelly, Geoffrey Lumb, Penelope McGhie, Kevin Murphy, Enyi Okoronkwo and Roisin Rae.
With set and costume design by Robert Jones, lighting design by Oliver Fenwick and music and sound design by Ben and Max Ringham.
Tartuffe previews from 9 February, with a press night on 21 February, on sale until 30 April. Hundreds of tickets for every performance available at £15.
Talks and events
Adapter John Donnelly and Director Blanche McIntyre Thu 28 February, 6pm
A Short History of Molière and His Plays Mon 4 March, 6pm
The Greatest Literary Anti-Heroes Wed 13 March, 6pm
Exploring Tartuffe at the National Theatre Thu 25 April, 10.30am
Denis O'Hare on Playing Tartuffe Fri 26 April, 4pm
Playwriting at the NT with John Donnelly Sat 27 April, 10.30am