The new Alan Bennett play, The Habit of Art, now enjoying a sold-out run in London at the National Theatre, will be seen in Washington via hi-definition broadcast at the Lansburgh Theatre for a one-night-only screening Monday, May 3rd, 2010.
This world premiere production reunites many of the cast and creative team who presented Bennett’s Tony Award-winning production of The History Boys on Broadway in 2006 including director Nicholas Hytner and actors Frances de la Tour and Richard Griffiths.
This production has won critical acclaim across London. “Another absolute cracker, often wonderfully and sometimes filthily funny, but also deeply and unexpectedly moving,” says The Daily Telegraph. The Independent raves, “Bennett the maestro returns with a multi-layered masterpiece.”
Benjamin Bitten, sailing uncomfortably close to the wind with his new opera, Death in Venice, seeks advice from his former collaborator and friend, W. H. Auden. During this imagined meeting, their first for twenty-five years, they are observed and interrupted by, amongst others, their future biographer and a young man from the local bus station. The Habit of Art is as much about the theatre as it is about poetry or music. It looks at the unsettling desires of two difficult men and at the ethics of biography. It reflects on growing old, on creativity and inspiration and on persisting when all passion’s spent: ultimately, on the habit of art.
The Shakespeare Theatre Company is the sole venue in the greater D.C. area presenting high-definition screenings of the National Theatre’s productions this season. The successful debut of the National Theatre’s simulcast of Phédre, which played to sold-out houses at Sidney Harman Hall on June 29 and July 13, 2009 was followed by presentations of All’s Well That Ends Well and Nation. The Habit of Art marks the close of this season’s broadcasts.
Tickets for The Habit of Art are $20 general admission and can be purchased at the Shakespeare Theatre Box Offices, by phone: 202.547.1122 (voice), 202.638.3863 (TTY), 877.487.8849 (Toll Free), or online at ShakespeareTheatre.org.
We think you might enjoy the London Telegraph’s video review.