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NT Live: What to see this September

By Abigail Chandler

 

The Deep Blue Sea (September 1)

Deep Blue Sea

What’s it about?

The renowned Terence Rattigan play centres on a woman in the wake of a suicide attempt in the 1950s as she gradually reveals all about her stultifying marriage and dangerous affair with an RAF pilot.

Who’s in it?

Harry Potter’s Helen McCrory takes the lead role and is joined by The Musketeers’ Tom Burke as her lover and Peter Sullivan as her husband. 

Why should I see it?

McCrory is one of the most revered theatre actresses around and the play has garnered rave reviews. If you like slow-burning character drama performed by actors at the top of their game, then this is a must. And, with this being on a big screen, you won’t miss any of the nuances of McCrory’s performance like you would if you were at the back of the theatre.

It sounds familiar

There was a film adaptation back in 2011 starring Rachel Weisz and Tom Hiddleston. This revival of the play is receiving far better reviews than that film version did.

What the critics say

The Observer says that “Helen McCrory is in a different league” while Time Out calls it “Stunning. Exquisitely sad. Beautifully judged”.

Three Penny Opera

What’s it about?

The musical by Bertolt Brecht with music by Kurt Weill has been updated by playwright Simon Stephens (who wrote the stage play for The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time). Unscrupulous criminal Mack the Knife has returned to 1830s London and married Polly Peachum, against her parents’ wishes. Polly’s father sets out to get Mack arrested and hanged.

Who’s in it?

Rory Kinnear (James Bond) takes the lead as Mack, while the rest of the cast is full of established British musical theatre performers.

Why should I see it?

Weill’s score is considered one of the best musical scores, and actually went some way to creating the musical theatre genre. The play is quite political and perhaps a bit more rough-and-ready than you’d expect from a musical.

It sounds familiar

Even if you haven’t heard of the play, you’ve certainly heard some of the songs – especially ‘The Ballad of Mack the Knife’. You’ve probably heard the Sinatra cover version...

What the critics say

The Evening Standard calls it “enjoyably raucous. Rory Kinnear’s really on song in this enticingly sleazy revival” and the Independent calls it “a snarling, sexy beast of a show”.