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Top 5 theatre shows to see this week (January 21-27)

Jack Lear – Hull Truck Theatre

Barrie Rutter directs and plays the title role in Ben Benison’s updating of King Lear about a Humber trawler man and his daughters, with music from Eliza Carthy. It opens in Hull on January 22.

When We Have Sufficiently Tortured Each Other – National Theatre, London

This looks like being one of the most anticipated theatre events of the year. Katie Mitchell [1] directs Cate Blanchett [2] in Martin Crimp [3]’s new play, inspired by Samuel Richardson’s novel, Pamela. It opens in the Dorfman on January 23.

When We Have Sufficiently Tortured Each Other. Photo: Gillian Hyland

Dear Elizabeth – Gate Theatre, London

For Ellen McDougall’s production of Sarah Ruhl’s two-hander about the correspondence between Elizabeth Bishop and Robert Lowell, two different actors will play the poets for each performance. Jade Anouka, Tamsin Greig, Alex Jennings and Travis Alabanza have already been announced; more names will join them. It opens on January 23.

Artistic director Ellen McDougall: ‘At the Gate, directors don’t have assumptions about what theatre is’ [4]

Leave to Remain – Lyric Hammersmith, London

Billy Cullum and Tyrone Huntley [5] star in a story of love and visas in uncertain times with original songs by Bloc Party’s Kele Okereke. Directed by Robby Graham, it opens on January 24.

Welcome to the UK – Bunker Theatre, London

Chris Sonnex kicks off his first season as artistic director of the Bunker [6] with this new piece from the company behind Borderline, a show about the Calais Jungle. Devised and performed by a mixed ensemble of refugee and European performers, it opens on January 25 and there’s a chance to see both pieces over the course of its run.