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Nowt2Do.Com Preview - National Anthems - Old Vic London

Latest Reviews: My Fair Lady, Bristol Balloon Fiesta, Hotel Du Vin, The Welsh National Opera, Madame Butterfly, Truffle Shuffle, New Tobacco Factory Listings, Starlight Express, Cinderella, The Relaxation Centre, The Knight Before Christmas, The WNO, Twelfth Night, The Woman In White, Mary Poppins World Premier Reviewed


Nowt2Do.Com Theatre Preview

Name: National Anthems by Dennis McIntyre
Waterloo Road, London, SE1 8NB
Dates: 1 February - 23rd April 2005
How to book:
Call 0870 060 6635, or visit

National Anthems
by Dennis McIntyre

Birmingham, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit, in the mid 1980s. Arthur and Leslie Reed, newcomers to the area, are clearing up after a party. Suddenly one of their neighbours, Ben Cook, arrives on the doorstep unannounced to introduce himself. But what seems at first like a friendly visit gradually turns into something very different. As the night wears on the tensions within the Reeds’ marriage slowly come to the surface, while Ben’s failed ambitions and damaged past push his bitterness and suppressed violence to the limit. The party games increase in intensity and the emotional barriers come tumbling down, culminating in a devastating clash of wills, values and bodies.

Played in real time, Dennis McIntyre’s raw and shocking play is at once a searing critique of suburban values and a hard-hitting parable about American materialism. Shot through with wit, pain and anger, it paints a powerful and honest portrait of competitiveness, status anxiety, and the fragile nature of a marriage built on the worship of consumer goods rather than love.

Dennis McIntyre was born in Detroit, and died in 1989. His play Modigliani, a ribald comedy about artists struggling to survive in 1916 Paris, focussed on three days in the troubled personal and professional life of the self-destructive Italian artist. Rewritten and produced on Broadway in 1980, it was staged in London in 1987. Split Second, an explosive encounter between a black Manhattan police officer and a white car thief, was produced in New York in 1984, had its European premiere in Edinburgh, and was later presented in London, as well as several American cities. Established Price, a tale of white-collar angst in the age of corporate takeovers, was first staged in 1987.

National Anthems was first produced at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center in Waterford, Connecticut and at the GeVa Theater in Rochester, New York. In 1988 it was staged at the Long Wharf Theater in New Haven, Connecticut, directed by Arvin Brown and starring Kevin Spacey, Tom Berenger and Mary McDonnell. For The Old Vic production, directed by David Grindley, Kevin Spacey will again be appearing as Ben Cook.

Tickets: £10, £15, £20, £25, £32.50, £40

 The Old Vic London's New Season:

Cloaca by Maria Goos
16 September – 11 December.

Aladdin by Bille Brown
17 December 2004 – 22 January 2005

National Anthems by Dennis McIntyre
1 February – 23 April 2005

The Philadelphia Story by Philip Barry
3 May – 23 July 2005

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