In the Main House  

  • The European premiere of the Tony Award-winning rock musical Passing Strange brings an electrifying musical odyssey to the Young Vic stage. Directed by Liesl Tommy, with book and lyrics by singer-songwriter Stew, and music by Stew Stewart and Heidi Rodewald, created in collaboration with Annie Dorsen, from 14 May – 6 July.  
  • Kwame Kwei-Armah will direct his final production as Young Vic Artistic Director with the world premiere of A Face in the Crowd, a cautionary tale about the dangers of celebrity, power, and politics based on the classic ‘50s Hollywood film, with music and lyrics by Elvis Costello and book by Sarah Ruhl, from 10 September – 9 November.  
  • The Little Foxes by Lillian Hellman, about greed, ambition and a family on the edge, receives a savage new staging by Olivier Award-winning director Lyndsey Turner, produced in association with Second Half Productions, from 4 December 2024 – 8 February 2025.  

Taking Part  

  • Following its radical two-year educational programme INNOVATE, Taking Part hosts the INNOVATE: Legacy & Learning Symposium, a week-long series of free events for teachers, freelance artists, creative engagement departments, and applied theatre practitioners to explore what artists and arts organisations can bring to the curriculum and school life, from 11 – 16 March.  
  • Neighbourhood Theatre Company presents May Fest, a takeover of the Young Vic Theatre with a joyous week of free workshops, events and experiences for the local Lambeth and Southwark community, from 9 – 16 May.   
  • The Sundown Kiki Reloaded documentary by Asa Haynes and Jamel Duane Alatise is released today, celebrating Taking Part’s partnership with New York’s Hetrick-Martin Institute, and featuring the making of Sundown Kiki Reloaded, interviews with the cast and creatives and behind the scenes footage from Taking Part’s Ballroom journey. 

Creators Program  

  • Annie Kershaw is the recipient of the 2024 Genesis Future Directors Award, a vital and renowned professional training opportunity funded by the Genesis Foundation that enables early-career artists to direct a production at the Young Vic.  
  • The Creators Program teams up with Black Lives in Music and Musicians’ Union for Introduction to Making for Music Directors, a new development programme and partnership for 2024 dedicated to supporting Black and Global Majority music directors, to demystify the industry, build artist connections and increase representation.  

NEW ’24 – Young Vic hosts the 11th season of new commissions by RWCMD 

  • The Young Vic welcomes the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama for NEW’24, its annual festival of new writing, featuring four new commissions from Rhiannon Boyle, Simon Longman, Isley Lynn and Paula B Stanic, plus NEW VOICES staging new writing from final year students. In the Young Vic Maria Theatre from 5 – 14 June, following an initial run in Cardiff. 

Kwame Kwei-Armah invites you to his final season at the Young Vic Theatre as he today announces he will step down from the role of Artistic Director in Autumn 2024.  

Kwame Kwei-Armah joined the Young Vic as Artistic Director in February 2018, becoming the first African Caribbean director to lead a major British theatre.  During his tenure he has produced 40 productions across the theatre’s spaces, including 30 in the Main House where more than half of all writers and directors were women. Black and Global Majority artists have directed over half and written 48% of all Main House shows. Off stage, the Young Vic has gone from 11% to 44% Black and Global Majority staff across the organisation and 40% in senior management. 

Under Kwame’s leadership three critically acclaimed productions have transferred to the West End, along with two Broadway transfers, plus a feature film adaptation is shortly due for release. He launched Best Seat in Your House, an innovative new streaming platform, in 2021, which took Young Vic shows to audiences across 86 countries. The Creators Program, formerly the Directors Program, launched in 2022, celebrating multi and anti-disciplinary artists and re-imagining future practice. Taking Part reached new corners across London and internationally, from New York to Australia, with unique community shows and partnerships, along with its radical innovation in schools, championing the value that artists and creative teaching bring to classrooms. 

Young Vic productions have been recognised with numerous awards and nominations every year during Kwame’s tenure and most recently in 2023 alone received an Olivier Award, a Critics Circle Award, two Tony Award nominations and more.   

Kwame Kwei-Armah, Artistic Director of the Young Vic said: It’s been the honour of a lifetime to lead the Young Vic and I have been served magnificently by the team at the Arts Council, the Board and all of my colleagues. I step down knowing that our team and artists are representative of London and that we have continued the theatre’s incredible contribution to this industry and our community.  

“The three pillars that have guided my tenure have been innovation, access and community, and I’m proud of all that we have achieved. But it is a bittersweet moment. The painful reality is I am leaving a subsidised sector where 13 years of standstill funding is taking its toll. For decades the theatre industry has fuelled the UK’s world-renowned creative industries, providing vital pathways for artists to flourish, going from subsidised theatre, into the West End, and into TV and film. But without investment we could lose this pipeline of talent within a generation. I’m hopeful that this can and must change but it needs sincere government intervention. 

“I want to thank our audiences and supporters who have continued their Young Vic journey with us and many who have joined us for the first time. I invite you to join me as I’m rocking out at the Young Vic with shows that mean the world to me and sum up what a building like this can do. Passing Strange is a brilliant post-modern Black rock musical directed by Liesl Tommy with book and lyrics by Stewand music by Stew Stewart and Heidi Rodewald;A Face in the Crowd is a political metaphor for our times with music by Elvis Costello and book by Sarah Ruhl; and Lillian Hellman’s The Little Foxes with Lyndsey Turner, sees one of the finest directors in Britain, making a classic play speak to the here and now.” 

Glenn Earle, Chair of the Board, said: “It has been one of the great pleasures of my professional life to work closely with the phenomenon that is Kwame Kwei-Armah. 

“Kwame is an exceptional artist and inspirational leader. He has brought his energy, creativity, artistic brilliance, generosity of spirit and sense of social responsibility to the role of Artistic Director of the Young Vic over the last six years. Leading and inspiring an incredible team, he has built on the extraordinary achievements of those artistic directors who have come before him to make the Young Vic the groundbreaking, representative and world leading theatre it is today. 

“Kwame has led the Young Vic during one of the most challenging periods for the theatre sector in living memory and has done so with great skill, courage and clarity of vision. He has ensured excellence on our stages and positive impact well beyond The Cut. Under Kwame’s leadership, multiple Young Vic productions have transferred to the West End and Broadway, Best Seat in Your House has been streamed to over 85 countries and industry awards have regularly come our way.  

“At the same time, Kwame has demonstrated a clear and consistent commitment to community – both to theatre more broadly and to the people of Lambeth and Southwark – and has ensured that we have continued to invest in and expand the reach both of our artist-based Creators Program and our local community-oriented Taking Part. 

“On behalf of the Board, I thank Kwame for all he has done for the Young Vic and wish him all the very best for the next steps of his artistic and creative career when he leaves us later this year. In the meantime, I am confident that Kwame’s final season will be absolutely unmissable. 

“We will soon start looking for someone who shares our values to lead the Young Vic into our next exciting phase of globally significant theatre-making with a clarity of vision and purpose and unbridled creativity and joy.” 

In addition to the upcoming season, Kwame will programme a further production for 2025 and will step down in Autumn 2024. Recruitment for a new Artistic Director will begin from next week.  

Tickets for INNOVATE: Legacy & Learning Symposium events go on general sale today. Tickets for Passing Strange, A Face in the Crowd, The Little Foxes and NEW’24 go on priority sale today to members and public booking opens on 19 February.   


Book & Lyrics by Stew  

Music by Stew Stewart & Heidi Rodewald
Created in collaboration with Annie Dorsen

Directed by Liesl Tommy  

Tuesday 14 May – Saturday 6 July 2024  

The European premiere of the Tony Award-winning rock musical, Passing Strange opens at the Young Vic Theatre in May 2024, directed by Liesl Tommy (Aretha Franklin biopic Respect, Tony nominated Eclipsed), with book and lyrics by Stew, and music by Stew Stewart and Heidi Rodewald, created in collaboration with Annie Dorsen

You know, it’s weird when you wake up in the morning and realize that your entire adult life was based on a decision made by a teenager. A stoned teenager.  

A young, Black musician sets out on an electrifying musical odyssey to find himself and his place in the world, swapping his middle-class L.A. upbringing for punk rock and protest in 1980s Amsterdam and Berlin.  

This European premiere marks the first production since Broadway 2008 where it received seven Tony Award nominations, winning for Best Book of a Musical; seven Drama Desk Award nominations, winning three awards for Outstanding Musical, Outstanding Lyrics and Outstanding Music; and it was named winner of the Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Musical. 

“A thrilling score in which rock, punk, funk and gospel conduct a revival meeting that blows the roof off.” (Rolling Stone – Broadway, 2008)  

“Its big heart throbs to the sound of electric guitars… Richer in wit, feeling and sheer personality than most of what is classified as musical theater.” (New York Times – Broadway, 2008) 

Liesl Tommy is an award-winning international theatre and film director. She received the Tony Award nomination for Best Direction for the Broadway hit Eclipsed starring Lupita Nyong’o,and made her feature film directorial debut with the Aretha Franklin biopic Respect starring Jennifer Hudson. Her television credits include Walking Dead, Insecure and Jessica Jones.  

Stew is a critically acclaimed singer-songwriter and Tony/Obie Award winning playwright and performer. He leads two bands: The Negro Problem and Baba Bibi.  He is also Professor of the Practice of Musical Theater Writing at Harvard University. 

Heidi Rodewald is a Tony Award-nominated, Obie Award-winning co-composer, collaborating and performing with Stew for over two decades, releasing 10 critically acclaimed albums and creating new theatre work. Credits include composer with librettist Donna Di Novelli, The Good Swimmer (BAM Next Wave Festival), A Lifesaving Manual (UCLA’s Center for the Art of Performance). 

The creative team also brings together Set and Costume Designer Ben Stones, Sound Designer Tom Gibbons, Musical Supervisor Brandon Michael Nase, Musical Director Art Terry, Choreographer Dickson Mbi, Casting Director Heather Basten CDG, and Voice and Dialect Coach Hazel Holder.   

Full casting and further creative team to be announced. 

BSL Performance: Thu 30 May, 7.30pm   

Captioned Performances: Wed 5 June, 2.30pm & Thu 13 June, 7.30pm   

Relaxed Performances: Sat 8 June, 2.30pm & Thu 27 June, 7.30pm   

Sensory Adapted Performance: Tue 18 June, 7.30pm  

Audio Described Performances: Sat 22 June, 2.30pm & Tue 25 June, 7.30pm  

Passing Strange goes on sale to Soul Mates today, and Friends on 13 February  

Public booking opens 19 February 


Music and lyrics by Elvis Costello and Book by Sarah Ruhl  

Directed by Kwame Kwei-Armah  

Based on an original story by Budd Schulberg and the Warner Bros Film 

Tuesday 10 September – Saturday 9 November 2024  

Young Vic Artistic Director Kwame Kwei-Armah directs the world premiere of Sarah Ruhl’s (Eurydice, The Clean House) adaptation of the Hollywood classic A Face in the Crowd featuring original songs by Grammy Award-winner Elvis Costello

You gotta keep him here, Miss Jeffries. He’s the goose who laid the golden egg. 

When local radio producer Marcia Jeffries interviews drunk drifter ‘Lonesome Rhodes’ in his jail cell, she immediately sees his potential and gives him a slot on her show. But as Lonesome’s fans grow more clamorous and the politicians start taking notice, Marcia realises she has unleashed a force she can no longer control.  

A Face in the Crowd is a cautionary tale, highlighting the dangers of elevating celebrities to positions of unchecked power.  

Elvis Costello is a writer and part-time musician who made a number of records in the 20th Century, some of which are still remembered today. Costello has been performing in public for over fifty years, writing over 500 songs and collaborating with Paul McCartney, Burt Bacharach and his wife, Diana Krall. 

Sarah Ruhl is an award-winning playwright, author, essayist, and professor. She has received the Tony Award nomination for Best Play and is a two-time Pulitzer Prize Finalist. Her many plays include Eurydice, The Clean House, Stage Kiss, In the Next Room, or the vibrator play, Stage Kiss, the Oldest Boy and Letters from Max.    

Full casting and creative team to be announced.  

BSL Performance:  Tue 15 October, 7.30pm   

Captioned Performances: Thu 26 September, 7.30pm & Sat 5 October, 2.30pm   

Relaxed Performances: Sat 19 October, 2.30pm & Thu 24 October, 7.30pm   

Sensory Adapted Performance: Thu 10 October, 7.30pm  

Audio Described Performances: Tues 1 October, 7.30pm & Sat 26 October, 2.30pm  

A Face in the Crowd goes on sale to Soul Mates today, and Friends on 13 February 

Public booking opens 19 February 


By Lillian Hellman  

Directed by Lyndsey Turner  

4 December 2024 – 8 February 2025  

Olivier Award-winner Lyndsey Turner (The Witches, The Crucible) directs a savage new staging of Lillian Hellman’s The Little Foxes, a story of greed, ambition and a family on the edge.  

There are people who eat the earth and eat all the people on it.  

Then there are people who stand around and watch them eat it.  

After a lifetime spent watching her brothers grow rich, Regina Hubbard has had enough of standing around. When a businessman offers the family the prospect of untold wealth and power, a sequence of events unfolds that sets brother against brother, father against son and Regina against the whole pack of them.  

Lyndsey Turner is an Associate Director at the National Theatre. Her work includes: The Witches, The Crucible (also West End) and Under Milk Wood (National Theatre), A Number (Old Vic); Far Away, Faith Healer, Fathers and Sons (Donmar Warehouse); Hamlet (Barbican); The Treatment, Chimerica (Almeida); Girls and Boys, Posh (Royal Court).  

Lillian Hellman was an American playwright, screenwriter and memoirist born in 1905. Her plays include The Children’s HourThe Searching Wind, and Another Part of the Forest. She won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best American Play for Watch on the Rhine and Toys in the Attic.  

Design is by Lizzie Clachan, Sound Design is by Tingying Dong.  

Produced in association with Second Half Productions

Full casting and further creative team to be announced.  

BSL Performance:  Tue 7 January, 7.30pm   

Captioned Performances: Tue 17 December, 7.30pm & Sat 4 January, 2.30pm   

Relaxed Performances: Sat 11 January, 2.30pm & Thu 16 January, 7.30pm   

Sensory Adapted Performance: Thu 9 January, 7.30pm  

Audio Described Performances: Thu 19 December, 7.30pm & Sat 18 January, 2.30pm  

The Little Foxes goes on sale to Soul Mates today, and Friends on 13 February 

Public booking opens 19 February 

Young Vic Taking Part presents  

INNOVATE: Legacy & Learning Symposium    

with elements co-designed with the CREATE Centre, Sydney  

Monday 11 March – Saturday 16 March 2024   

INNOVATE: Legacy & Learning Symposium will unpack the essential findings of Taking Part’s radical Learning programme INNOVATE, through a week-long series of events including workshops, talks, networking opportunities and practice sharing for teachers, freelance artists, creative engagement departments and applied theatre students.   

Young Vic Taking Part delivered INNOVATE for two academic years from 2021 – 2023 which saw teachers and artists collaborate to use the arts to teach across the curriculum. The programme took place in two local schools in Lambeth and Southwark, and Royal Holloway, University of London, recently released the research findings.    

The symposium will now use the project’s essential findings and learnings to explore what artists and arts organisations can bring to the curriculum and all aspects of school life.    

There will be 20 free events across the week led by creatives, artists, and academics, including: Keynote Address with INNOVATE Research Lead Professor Helen Nicholson and Co-director of CREATE CentreSydney, Professor Michael Anderson, which will delve into creativity in schools, and theatres as civic places for learning; Building Communitylooking at collaborative practice from the rehearsal room to the classroom, with director Stef O’DriscollImagination in the Classroom using playwriting and screenwriting in the classroom, with writer Emma Dennis-Edwards; Playing in Class on the benefits of playful pedagogies, with director Kelechi OkaforPerforming in Class using acting and performance to interrogate classroom dynamics, led by actor Ronkẹ Adékọluẹ́jọThe Power of Sound unpacking the perceptions of noisy classrooms with composer Nicola T. ChangMultidisciplinary Practice in the classroom, with theatre-maker Philip J Morris;  networking sessions and more.    

INNOVATE: Legacy & Learning Symposium is supported by the British Council’s Connections Through Culture Programme. 

Full programme details and booking information is available at  

Tickets for INNOVATE: Learning & Legacy Symposium events go on general sale today. 

A Taking Part Project from Young Vic Theatre   


Presented by Neighbourhood Theatre Company    

Thursday 9 May – Thursday 16 May 2024   

May Fest returns in 2024! Created by the Young Vic’s Neighbourhood Theatre CompanyMay Fest will take over the theatre with a week of workshops, events and experiences programmed for the local community. As the year turns to spring, May Fest will celebrate the start of the new season with joy, laughter and creativity. The full programme of events will be announced in due course.  

Founded in 2016, Neighbourhood Theatre Company works with locals from its home boroughs Lambeth and Southwark with opportunities to engage in theatre and take part in creative programmes.   

Sundown Kiki Reloaded Documentary  

Taking Part today releases the Sundown Kiki Reloaded Documentary, a new film by Asa Haynes and Jamel Duane Alatise.   

In 2021 Sundown Kiki was born: an explosive new show by young queer Black and Global Majority artists that brought the worlds of theatre and ballroom together. The conversations Sundown Kiki sparked led to Communities of Resistance, a creative project where the same young people travelled to the home of ballroom, New York, in a partnership with the Hetrick-Martin Institute (HMI). An international creative partnership was ignited and in 2023 the Young Vic staged Sundown Kiki Reloaded, a remount with a US twist, which featured Kiki Scene youth from the Hetrick-Martin Institute.  

The documentary celebrates Taking Part’s partnership with New York’s Hetrick Martin Institute, featuring the making of Sundown Kiki Reloaded, interviews with cast and creatives, and behind the scenes footage from our ballroom journey. 

The video is released on YouTube and can be viewed at 


2024 Genesis Future Directors Award  

Annie Kershaw is today announced as the 2024 Genesis Future Directors Award recipient.  

The Genesis Future Directors Award program is made possible by the Genesis Foundation and provides early-career directors with the opportunity to explore and develop their craft by creating their first fully resourced production at the Young Vic, with mentoring and support from the theatre’s core artistic team. Further show details will be announced in due course.   

Annie Kershaw is currently the Carne Deputy Director at Jermyn Street Theatre. She was Associate Director on Best of Enemies in the West End after being the Jerwood Assistant Director of the Young Vic and Headlong co-production, as part of the Young Vic’s Jerwood Assistant Director Programme, supported by Jerwood Arts. Her credits as Director include Hedda GablerSafe (Reading Rep); Light (Five Shorts at the Young Vic); It’s A Flawed World After All (Flawstate); THIS IS NOT A PROTEST (Reading Thames Festival); Ulysses (Jermyn Street Theatre). Other assistant director credits include Jekyll & HydeDorian (Reading Rep); Henry IIRomeo and Juliet (Rabble Theatre).  

Black Lives in Music and the Musicians’ Union partnership  

The Creators Program teams up with Black Lives in Music andthe Musicians’ Union in a new partnership dedicated to supporting Black and Global Majority music directors in Introduction to Making for Music Directors.   

The project is created in response to the lack of diversity and opportunities for Black and Global Majority music directors and aims to demystify the role of the MD for musicians who have an interest in developing the skills and knowledge needed to move into the role. A cohort of early-career artists will now receive training and mentoring through masterclasses delivered by leading industry professionals running through to March this year.     

The sessions started in January 2024 and include: An overview of the music of musical theatre and The Black and Global Majority influence on the music of musical theatre, both led by Wendy Gadian; The Music Director and Director relationship, led by Susie McKenna and Mark Dickman; and The Music Director and Choreographer relationship, led by Lizzi Gee and Phil Bateman.  



Wednesday 5 – Saturday 8 June & Tuesday 11 – Friday 14 June  

Presented by Richard Burton Company  

NEW’24, Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama‘s acclaimed festival works closely with leading writers and directors on new plays commissioned by the College in association with companies including Paines Plough and Sherman Theatre. The productions will premiere at the College’s home in Cardiff before moving to the Young Vic in June. NEW also features RWCMD final year students presenting their own work in NEW VOICES.  

Couple Goals by Rhiannon Boyle, In collaboration with SHERMAN THEATRE  

A thought-provoking, sinister satire where three seemingly ordinary Gen Z couples are thrust into the surreal world of the reality TV show – Couple Goals.   

Falling Falling Falling Falling by Simon Longman  

This is a play about communication. And loneliness. And the world. The utter, horrible chaos of the world. And your place within that. Your place in all of that.   

The Glue by Isley Lynn  

When a fun-loving gang of friends reunite at a countryside Airbnb, they’re raring to live it up like they used to. But this close-knit clique is about to realise that the bonds between them are not unbreakable…  

Dissonance by Paula B Stanic, in collaboration with PAINES PLOUGH  

A rave, a protest to ‘kill the criminal justice bill’ and a night that will have consequences for decades to come. Moving between 1994 and 2023, Dissonance is a play exploring the importance of protest. 


Knock Knock by Liam Whiting 

2008 wasn’t a great time to be an estate agent was it? 

Over Your Dead Body by Joe Flynn 

A female criminal psychologist makes a formidable connection with an infamous male prisoner in this psychological tale of temptation and redemption. 

Trouble in Paradise by Stella Elliott-Fortnum 

Hairdresser Jen applies for a popular reality TV dating show to expand her social media platform and flies to Mallorca for a summer of love. She’s got nothing to lose and everything to gain…right? 

The full programme is available at  

NEW’24 goes on sale to Soul Mates today, and Friends on 13 February 

Public booking opens 19 February