Sex, Power and Cate Blanchett at the National

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Photo Source: Gillian Hyland. Pictured: Cate Blanchett in When We Have Sufficiently Tortured Each Other

If you feel like Oscar Wilde when he said: “I love acting. It is so much more real than life…” then you’re in the right place! With industry news, the latest castings, and upcoming projects, we’ll make sure stay updated on the ever-changing theatrical world. Whether it’s West End, fringe or regional theatre, we have your back.

Cate Blanchett makes a dark and sexy debut at the NT.
In an already sold-out run (don’t worry, you can queue for day tickets), Cate Blanchett is making her National Theatre debut in an S&M play by Martin Crimp called When We Have Sufficiently Tortured Each Other. With direction by Katie Mitchell, Blanchett and her co-star Stephen Dillane (Stannis Baratheon on Game of Thrones) delve into the dark world of power, sex and submission. Inspired by Samuel Richardson’s novel Pamela, the production has already caused an audience member to pass out. Be ready for a full-frontal evening of theatre.

Bueller? Bueller?
Matthew Broderick (Ferris Bueller’s Day Off) is all grown up and reprising a role from ten years ago this spring at Wyndham’s Theatre. The Starry Messenger stars Broderick as a cold creature who becomes enamoured with the cosmos. Written by Kenneth Lonergan (This Is Our Youth and Manchester By The Sea), the production will co-star Elizabeth McGovern, best known for her role on Downton Abbey. Directed by Sam Yates, with design by Chiara Stephenson and music by Alex Baranowski, the show opens in May 2019. We will share further casting updates as they are announced.

Read: So You Want to Act in the West End?

A revival of Mary Poppins has been announced for this year, with tickets going on sale at the end of January. The production will star Zizi Strallen reprising her titular role and Charlie Stemp (Half a Sixpence). Running at the Prince Edward Theatre, the show will have “family performances” on Wednesdays with earlier start times and reduced-price tickets. Sound design is being updated by Paul Gatehouse (flourishing the original music and lyrics by Richard M Sherman and Robert B Sherman), and lighting by Natasha Katz and Hugh Vanstone. Direction is by Richard Eyre with co-director Matthew Bourne. Choreography is by Matthew Bourne and Stephen Mear.

Does life imitate art? Or is it the other way round?
Art, the award-winning play by Yasmina Reza, will tour again in 2019 after breaking box office records last year. The Old Vic’s production will be partly remounted, produced by David Pugh and Dafydd Rogers. With direction by Ellie Jones, the 2019 UK tour will star Nigel Havers, Denis Lawson and Stephen Tompkinson (all of whom appeared in the 2018 tour), as three friends who are flummoxed when one of them buys an expensive painting –  a blank canvas with a few lines – with their ensuing arguments devolving into personal attacks.

The Tina cast recording is finally here.
Tina – The Tina Turner Musical at the Aldwych Theatre is extending its run until December 2019, with more tickets going on sale on 25 January. It has also been announced that they will record and release a cast album. Adrienne Warren, who has been blowing audiences away in the titular role, will be on stage until April 2019, as will her co-star and onstage husband Kobna Holdbrook-Smith, who plays Ike Turner. They have yet to announce who will take over the roles. The show has also recently announced that it will open on Broadway in the autumn of 2019.

Read: Do You Want to Land a Role in the Lion King?

Violet opens at the Charing Cross Theatre.
Jeanine Tesori’s award-winning musical about beauty, faith and transformation is at the Charing Cross Theatre until April 2019. With Kaisa Hammarlund (Fun Home) in the title role and direction by Shuntaro Fujita, the musical follows Violet as she leaves home in 1964 in search of a faith healer who can make her beautiful. Matthew Harvey and Jay Marsh play Monty and Flick, two soldiers she meets on her journey. Choreography is by Cressida Carré with music direction by Dan Jackson, costumes by Jonathan Lipman, design by Morgan Large, lighting design by Howard Hudson and sound design by Andrew Johnson.

Local Hero becomes a stage sensation.
David Greig, Royal Lyceum Theatre’s artistic director, and Bill Forsyth have adapted the 1983 film Local Hero into a stage musical. With new music and lyrics by Mark Knopfler, who scored the film, the production will open in Edinburgh at the Royal Lyceum in March 2019. Damian Humbley will star as Mac, the American oil executive who ventures to Scotland, with Simon Rouse as his boss Happer, and Matthew Pidgeon and Katrina Bryan as Gordon and Stella, the hotel proprietors he befriends in the fictional town of Ferness. A run in London in the summer of 2020 is scheduled at The Old Vic, with specific dates forthcoming.