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The Divide | 2017 International Festival © Manuel Harlan

The Divide Part 1

Alan Ayckbourn / The Old Vic / Annabel Bolton

This extraordinary new work by Alan Ayckbourn is a tale for our own turbulent times that unflinchingly examines a dystopian society of brutal repression, forbidden love and seething insurrection.

World Premiere

The Divide is an extraordinary new work by one of the UK’s greatest storytellers, Alan Ayckbourn. Unfolding over two parts, The Divide is a tale for our own turbulent times that unflinchingly examines a dystopian society of brutal repression, forbidden love and seething insurrection.

A century from now England is hit by a deadly contagion. Society is decimated as contact between men and women becomes fatal. Under the dictates of an elusive Preacher, an unthinkable solution is enforced. Separated by the Divide, the adult survivors are segregated by gender with men wearing white as a mark of their purity and women – still infected – clothed in black as a sign of their sin.

Decades later, brother and sister Elihu and Soween are growing up learning the ways of their new, tightly controlled society. As they begin to glimpse the cracks in the system, Elihu falls for the daughter of two radical mothers, risking fatal disease and threatening to ignite a bloody revolution. The Divide is a searing vision of a future defined by brutal repression, forbidden love and seething insurrection.

Spread across two separate parts, The Divide is a hugely engaging and constantly surprising story of a society that segregates – but is still recognisable.

Alan Ayckbourn has produced 80 internationally acclaimed stage works including Absurd Person SingularThe Norman Conquests and A Chorus of Disapproval. His plays are regularly performed all over the world, and have been translated into more than 35 languages.

The Divide receives its premiere in a co-production between The Old Vic, London, Edinburgh International Festival and Karl Sydow, directed by Annabel Bolton, an associate director of The Old Vic.

Audio Described
19 Aug 2pm
BSL interpreted
19 Aug 2pm
20 Aug 2pm

A co-production between The Old Vic, Edinburgh International Festival, and Karl Sydow

Alan Ayckbourn Writer
Annabel Bolton Director

Cast includes Clare Burt, Jake Davies, Erin Doherty, Thusitha Jayasundera, Richard Katz, Sophie Melville, Joanne McGuinness, Clare Lawrence MoodyWeruche Opia, Martin Quinn, Letty Thomas, Finty Williams

Laura Hopkins Designer
Christopher Nightingale Composer
David Plater Lighting designer
Bobby Aitken Sound designer
Ash J Woodward Video designer
Jessica Ronane Casting director

More information about some of the artists

The Old Vic
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Alan Ayckbourn
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Annabel Bolton

8-20 August 2017

This event was part of a previous International Festival and is therefore unavailable to book. The 2020 programme will be announced in the spring.