The Vote, a play for theatre and television by James Graham, will run at the Donmar Warehouse between 24th April and 6th May ahead of a live broadcast on 7th May on More4.
|Catherine Tate, Mark Gatiss and Nina Sosanya|
An ensemble cast of actors will represent the team of polling station volunteers, polling officers, and the diverse array of characters that are the voting public.
Initial casting includes: Fisayo Akinade, Jade Anouka, Madalena Alberto, Nicholas Burns, Paul Chahidi, Jackie Clune, Pandora Colin, Rosalie Craig, Heather Craney, Judi Dench, Rachel Denning, Hadley Fraser, Mark Gatiss, Llewella Gideon, Alice Hewkin, Kadiff Kirwan, Aïcha Kossoko, Wanda Opalinska, Bill Paterson, Prasanna Puwanarajah, Nina Sosanya, Catherine Tate, Yusra Warsama, Timothy West and Finty Williams.
The Vote will be an unprecedented national television event, broadcast on More4 at the precise time in which the drama is set, and deploying cutting-edge fixed rig technology (as used on popular Channel 4 series Educating Yorkshire, 24 Hours in A&E and One Born Every Minute) to capture theatre performance for the very first time.
Set in a fictional London Polling Station on Thursday 7th May 2015 in the final ninety minutes before the polls close, The Vote will be beamed directly into living rooms around the UK at that precise time 8:30-10pm live from the Donmar Stage. Channel 4 has commissioned Twofour – the award-winning factual, features and entertainment producers behind Educating Yorkshire – to produce the broadcast.
The Vote looks at what happens in Britain on election night through the eyes of those at the polling station. Every five years we assert our right as citizens to uphold or replace our government – but, characteristically, we do it in the most unremarkable and understated of ways – at local parish churches, primary schools and community centres across the country. Set in a fictional polling station, James Graham’s new play shines a light on the diverse, diligent and often hilarious individuals who turn these unglamorous settings into places where history is made.
There will be two weeks of performances at the Donmar in the run-up to the live broadcast. All of these tickets will be made available through a ballot, which opens on Monday 30th March at 10am via www.donmarwarehouse.com.
Josie Rourke (Donmar Warehouse Artistic Director/The Vote Director) said: "Broadcast live to the nation on the night of the General Election, this is a unique opportunity for the Donmar to make a small theatre feel very big. Some of the nation’s greatest actors are coming together this election night to give theatre a seat at the table of a national event. Everyone involved is approaching this experiment with a sense of adventure.
"To work with a playwright and company of this calibre and significance on such a bold project is a dream come true. When James Graham and I collaborated on Privacy, we were attempting something no-one had tried before. This is our next step in pushing the boundaries of how theatre speaks to audiences in a brave, new and popular language about the times in which we live. This huge acting company will be portraying a ninety minute slice of our nation as it goes to the polls. The scale and scope of this incredible company of actors is going to make this a very special event.
"This is the first time Judi Dench has been back on the Donmar stage since 1976. To have her at the heart of this incredible company of actors makes this great event a total joy"
John Hay "Commissioning Editor for Arts, Channel 4) said: "Lots of channels make programmes about artists, but at Channel 4 we try to give artists the chance to make programmes about us. The Vote is a major step forward in that long tradition. Josie told me when we first began talking about it we’d have a wonderful cast, but I’m still delighted and more than a little star-struck by the list. I’m hugely grateful to them for joining forces with her to realise James’ brilliant script, and to Twofour for bringing it to the screen in such an innovative way."
Design is by Robert Jones with lighting by Oliver Fenwick and sound by Nick Lidster for Autograph. Compositions are by Michael Bruce with movement by Stephen Mear.