The National Theatre announces today full casting for its highly acclaimed production of Dear England, transferring to the West End this Autumn. This new smash-hit play by James Graham, directed by Rupert Goold, tells the story of the England men’s football team under Gareth Southgate. It will play at the Prince Edward Theatre from 9 October 2023 for a strictly limited 14-week run.
Dervla Kirwan (Smother, Apple TV; Material Girl, BBC) will play the role of Pippa Grange, sports psychologist and Head of People and Team Development at The Football Association from 2017 until 2019, joining the previously announced Joseph Fiennes (The Handmaid’s Tale, Hulu; The Mother, Netflix) as Gareth Southgate.
The cast also includes Denzel Baidoo as Bukayo Saka, Josh Barrow as Jordan Pickford, Gunnar Cauthery as Gary Lineker, Will Close as Harry Kane, Crystal Condie as Alex Scott, Will Fletcher as Jordan Henderson, Darragh Hand as Marcus Rashford, John Hodgkinson as Greg Clarke, Lloyd Hutchinson as Sam Allardyce, Albert Magashi as Jadon Sancho, Kel Matsena as Raheem Sterling, Lewis Shepherd as Dele Alli, Griffin Stevens as Harry Maguire, Paul Thornley as Mike Webster, Tony Turner as Greg Dyke, Ryan Whittle as Eric Dier. Nick Barclay, Tashinga Bepete, Kate Kelly Flood, Will Harrison-Wallace, Miranda Heath, Tom Mahy and Tristan Waterson complete the company. The cast will also be playing additional roles as part of the ensemble.
Following their acclaimed productions of Tammy Faye and Ink at the Almeida Theatre, writer James Graham (Best of Enemies, Young Vic; Sherwood, BBC) has reunited with director Rupert Goold (Spring Awakening, Almeida Theatre; Judy, 20th Century Fox) for this gripping examination of both nation and game.
It’s time to change the game. The country that gave the world football has since delivered a painful pattern of loss. Why can’t England’s men win at their own game?
With the worst track record for penalties in the world, England manager Gareth Southgate knows he needs to open his mind and face up to the years of hurt to take team and country back to the promised land.
Rupert Goold is joined by set designer, Es Devlin; costume designer Evie Gurney; lighting designer, Jon Clark; movement directors, Ellen Kane and Hannes Langolf; sound designers, Dan Balfour and Tom Gibbons, with additional music by Max Perryment and video designer, Ash J Woodward. Casting director is Bryony Jarvis Taylor; voice coach is Cathleen McCarron and dialect coach is Richard Ryder. Associate director is Elin Schofield, associate set designer is Will Brown, associate lighting designer is Ben Jacobs, associate sound designer is Alex Twiselton and resident director is Rasheka Christie-Carter.
Commissioned by the National Theatre, Dear England was developed with the theatre’s New Work department and had its world premiere in the Olivier theatre on 20 June 2023.