The Motive and the Cue
A Neal Street co-production with The National Theatre, this new play, The Motive and the Cue, directed by Sam Mendes and written by Jack Thorne was originally staged at the NT's Lyttelton Theatre between April and July 2023.
The production features Production Design by Es Devlin, Costume Design by Katrina Lindsay, Lighting by Jon Clark, Composing by Benjamin Kwasi Burrell, Sound Design by Paul Arditti and Video Design by Luke Halls. Associate director is Zoé Ford Burnett.
The Motive and the Cue is playing for a strictly limited season at the Noël Coward Theatre from 9 December 2023 until 23 March 2024 with an official opening night on Monday 18 December 2023. Tickets can be booked at TheMotiveandtheCue.com
Why would the most famous movie star in the world choose to do a play which everyone already knows? And what lures us back to the same plays, year after year? Richard Burton, newly married to Elizabeth Taylor, is to play the title role in an experimental new production of Hamlet under John Gielgud’s exacting direction. But as rehearsals progress, two ages of theatre collide and the collaboration between actor and director soon threatens to unravel. This fierce and funny new play by Jack Thorne offers a glimpse into the politics of a rehearsal room and the relationship between art and celebrity.
Key Creatives & Cast
Written by Jack Thorne
Directed by Sam Mendes
Set Design by Es Devlin
Costume Design by Katrina Lindsay
Lighting Design by Jon Clark
Composed by Benjamin Kwasi Burrell
Sound Design by Paul Arditti
Casting by Alastair Coomer CDG and Naomi Downham
West End director is Zoé Ford Burnett
Associate director is Yasmin Hafesji
West End Cast:
Laurence Ubong Williams
National Theatre Cast:
Laurence Ubong Williams
Noël Coward Theatre, London. December 2023 - March 2024
National Theatre, London. April - July 2023
"It’s elegantly put together and acted"
"A witty, deft, touching evocation of a fascinating, fraught encounter that captures the mood of those times"
"Immaculately directed by Sam Mendes"
"You’ll get goosebumps watching The Motive and the Cue at the National Theatre"
"Sam Mendes Is Right On Cue With Richard Burton, John Gielgud & Elizabeth Taylor In London’s Hottest New Play"
"Richard Burton and John Gielgud’s dramatic encounter brilliantly portrayed"
"A polished production"
"Dialogue of the first order and it’s a joy to hear"