Roger Allam in Rutherford and Son, 2019

Rutherford and Son starts at the National Theatre

Roger Allam returns to the National for the first time in a decade to play Rutherford in this new production directed by Polly Findlay. Further casting includes Joe Armstrong, Harry Hepple, Barbara Marten, Sally Rogers, Sam Troughton and Anjana Vasan.

The set and costume design are by Lizzie Clachan, the lighting design by Charles Balfour, the movement direction by Polly Bennett, the sound design by Paul Arditti, and with music by Kerry Andrew.

In a Northern industrial town, John Rutherford rules both factory and family with an iron will. But even as the furnaces burn relentlessly at the Glassworks, at home his children begin to turn against him.

Githa Sowerby’s astonishing play was inspired by her own experience of growing up in a family-run factory in Gateshead. Writing in 1912, when female voices were seldom heard on British stages, she now claims her place alongside Ibsen and Bernard Shaw with this searing depiction of class, gender and generational warfare. 

Talks and events

The life and works of Githa Sowerby || Friday 24 May, 6pm
Courtship, Romance and Forbidden Love in the 1900s || Friday 14 June, 6pm
Exploring Rutherford and Son || Monday 17 June, 2pm
Actor Roger Allam on Rutherford and Son || Friday 28 June, 4pm
Director Polly Findlay on Rutherford and Son || Wednesday 3 July, 6pm

From 16 May 2019 at Lyttelton at the National Theatre, London, with extended run until 3 August 2019.
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