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The Real Thing Tickets

Old Vic Theatre

James McArdle and Bel Powley star as a couple afflicted by self-deception in this starry revival of Tom Stoppard’s popular comedy.

The Real Thing Tickets On Sale Soon

Tom Stoppard’s classic comedy The Real Thing returns to London in a brand new revival this summer, starring James McArdle and Bel Powley. This kaleidoscopic tale of love, infidelity and the stories we tell ourselves is Stoppard at his witty best, following a writer-actor couple whose liaisons start with deceit but become very real. It plays for a strictly limited season at the Old Vic Theatre, so book tickets now to see the audience favourite live on stage.

About Tom Stoppard’s The Real Thing

When playwright Henry falls for actress-come-activist Annie, the adulterous way their relationship starts doesn’t seem like the foundation of a happy marriage. But does how it began really matter if they have the real thing?

Flitting between reality and fiction and delving into the complexities of performance, The Real Thing is one of Tom Stoppard’s best-loved works and the recipient of the 1984 Tony Award for Best Play.

Bel Powley and James McArdle in The Real Thing

James McArdle stars as Henry in his Old Vic debut. McArdle is an Olivier Award-nominated actor who has appeared in The Tragedy of Macbeth (Almeida), Angels in America (National Theatre) and television shows Mare of Easttown and Life After Life.

BAFTA nominee Bel Powley is Anna, also in her Old Vic debut. Powley is best-known for films including Diary of a Teenage Girl, A Royal Night Out and Mary Shelley. She has performed in theatre on Broadway and in London, including Lobby Hero at the Helen Hayes Theatre.

Creative Team

Playwright Tom Stoppard is one of the most celebrated dramatists of the last 50 years, with works including Arcadia and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead proving hugely influential for future writers. His most recent work, Leopoldstadt, won the 2020 Olivier Award for Best New Play and after transferring to Broadway, the 2023 Tony Award for Best Play. He is famous for his absurdist and layered work that tackles themes of identity, art, politics and philosophy.

The Real Thing at the Old Vic is directed by Olivier Award winner Max Webster, whose celebrated production of Life of Pi played in Sheffield, the West End and on a UK tour.

Book Tickets for The Real Thing at the Old Vic

One of the greatest living playwrights teams up with some of the best 21st-century talents for this starry revival; book The Real Thing tickets and enjoy its dissection of art, relationships and self-deception this summer.

Performance dates:
28 Aug 2024 - 26 Oct 2024
Running time:
2 hours and 20 minutes including an interval.
Age recommendation:
Best for age 14+

Show Times

How Long is The Real Thing?
The Real Thing running time is 2 hours and 20 minutes including an interval.
Matinee Shows
Performances start at 2.30pm and finish at 4.50pm.
Evening Shows
Performances start at 7.30pm and finish at 9.50pm.
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