The piece is based on the 1988 memoir of Joe Simpson, a mountain climber whose near-death experience was also documented in a BAFTA-winning documentary film. The stage adaptation had its world premiere in 2018 at Bristol Old Vic, marking 30 years since the publication of Simpson’s book. The Telegraph dubbed it “nail-biting” while the Guardian pronounced it a “thrilling, chilling drama”.
What do you do when death is imminent? Do you stop fighting and give in, or do you put your body through unimaginable pain and exertion in the grim hope there’s another way out? Climbing partners Joe Simpson and Simon Yates are tethered together, scaling the infamous Siula Grande mountain in the Peruvian Andes, when disaster strikes. The ground gives way and Simpson finds himself hanging above a treacherous drop. Yates is faced with an unthinkable decision: does he stay attached to Simpson and risk freezing to death, or does he cut the rope?
Tom Morris’ prior directorial credits include The Grinning Man, War Horse and Swallows & Amazons. The piece is adapted by David Grieg, who is Artistic Director of the Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh, and has previously worked on The Events, The Lorax, The Suppliant Women and more.
Design comes from Ti Green, sound designer and compositions from Jon Nicholls, lighting design from Chris Davey and movement direction from Sascha Milavic Davies.
Casting is yet to be announced.
How far would you go for survival? Go right to the brink and face up to impossible decisions when Touching The Void comes to Duke of York’s Theatre from 9 November.
Important informationPlaying at: Duke of York's Theatre, St Martin's Lane, London, WC2N 4BG
Performance dates: 28 Feb 2020 - 29 Feb 2020
Running time: 2 hours 25 mins (including 25-min interval)
Age restrictions: Recommended 12+
Special notice: Those who enjoyed Simpson’s book or the subsequent documentary film will want to sink their teeth into the stage adaptation of Touching The Void, which delivers the unbelievable story with electrifying clarity.