Based on a best-selling novel by Neil Gaiman, adapted by Joel Horwood and directed by Katy Rudd, this thrilling adventure of fantasy, myth and friendship, will play at the Noël Coward Theatre from 11 October until 25 November 2023. Following a highly acclaimed tour across the UK and Ireland, the National Theatre’s smash-hit production of The Ocean at the End of the Lane will return to London’s West End for a strictly limited 7-week run this autumn. A preview by west-end theatre columnist Riccha Grrover for Asian Lite International
This first major stage adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s work blends magic with memory in a tour-de-force of storytelling that takes audiences on an epic journey to a childhood once forgotten and the darkness that lurks at the very edge of it. Currently on tour, visiting 29 towns and cities across the UK and Ireland, the full cast will transfer with the show into London’s West End.
This year marks 10 years since Neil Gaiman’s best-selling novel, The Ocean at the End of the Lane,was first published. The novel won Book of the Year at 2013 National Book Awards and has sold over 1.5 million copies worldwide.
The Ocean at the End of the Lane production received its world premiere at the National Theatre in 2019. It made its West End debut at the Duke of York’s Theatre in 2021.
Writer Neil Gaiman said, “10 years since my novel was first published The Ocean at the End of the Lane won lots of awards and people loved it, then the National Theatre turned it into the most amazing play. I am thrilled, overjoyed and absolutely delighted that this glorious adaptation of my book is going to be returning to the West End on St Martin’s Lane. It makes audiences laugh and cry and wonder. If you wanted to see it, now is your chance.”
National Theatre Director, Rufus Norris said: “Audiences across the UK and Ireland have been immensely enjoying this beautiful story from Neil Gaiman’s incredible imagination for the last seven months. We are so pleased that this magical production of The Ocean at the End of the Lane, first created by Joel Horwood, Katy Rudd and their formidable creative team for our Dorfman Theatre, continues its wonderful journey, delighting audiences of all ages.”
The 17-strong ensemble cast are: Charlie Brooks (Ursula), Daniel Cornish (alternate Boy), Trevor Fox(Dad), Emma-Jane Goodwin (ensemble/understudy), Paolo Guidi (ensemble), Millie Hikasa (Lettie Hempstock), Lewis Howard (ensemble/understudy), Kemi-Bo Jacobs (Ginnie Hempstock), Jasmeen James (ensemble/understudy), Ronnie Lee (ensemble), Aimee McGoldrick (ensemble), Laurie Ogden (Sis), Keir Ogilvy (Boy), Domonic Ramsden (ensemble), Joe Rawlinson-Hunt (ensemble/understudy), Risha Silvera (ensemble/understudy) and Finty Williams (Old Mrs Hempstock).
The award-winning creative team includes set designer, Fly Davis; costume and puppet designer, Samuel Wyer; movement director, Steven Hoggett; composer, Jherek Bischoff; lighting designer, Paule Constable; sound designer, Ian Dickinson; magic and illusions director and designer, Jamie Harrison; puppetry director, Finn Caldwell and casting director, Naomi Downham. The associate creative team includes associate director, Sophie Dillon Moniram; associate set designer, Tim Blazdell; associate movement director, Jess Williams; associate lighting designers, Rob Casey (for Ammonite) and Tom Turner; associate sound designer, Chris Reid; associate magic and illusions director, John Bulleid; and associate puppetry director, Gareth Aled.
Neil Gaiman is known for his graphic novels, including The Sandman series (a major new Netflix series which in its first 10 days was watched for over 198 million hours by audiences around the world); his novels for adults and children including Stardust, Coraline, and The Graveyard Book; and multiple film and television projects including Good Omens (season 2 is due to appear on Amazon Prime from 28 July) and Anansi Boys.
The Ocean at the End of the Lane is currently on a 39-week UK and Ireland Tour until 7 October before it transfers to the Noël Coward Theatre.