National Theatre Live: The Magistrate

The Magistrate

by Arthur Wing Pinero

Starring John Lithgow

Directed by Timothy Sheader

Screening: Saturday 2 & Sunday 3 February*


*Check cinemas for additional sessions and variations

Running time: Approximately 3 hours (including interval)

In a similar vein to the National Theatre’s smash-hit comedies, She Stoops to Conquer, London Assurance and One Man, Two Guvnors, The Magistrate is sure to have audiences around the world doubled up with laughter.

Academy Award nominee and Tony Award-winner John Lithgow (Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Shrek, 3rd Rock from the Sun) takes the title role in Arthur Wing Pinero’s uproarious Victorian farce, directed by Olivier Award-winner Timothy Sheader (Crazy for You and Into the Woods, Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, London).

4 STARS Daily Mail, Evening Standard, The Times, Time Out, Sunday Express

‘A Victorian corker of a show.’ Daily Mail

‘John Lithgow is priceless.’ The Times

‘A comedy treat that’s as crisp, ripe and funny as One Man, Two Guvnors.’ Sunday Express

‘The marvellous Nancy Carroll.’ Daily Mail

‘Joshua McGuire is excellent, full of wicked glee.’ Time Out.

‘John Lithgow’s long-legged Posket is wonderfully funny.’ Independent on Sunday

‘John Lithgow is excellent...while Nancy Carroll dazzles as his spirited wife.’ Metro


A lady tells a white lie about her age and suddenly a whole family is embroiled in a night of misunderstandings, hair-raising discoveries and frantic escapes from the law.

John Lithgow plays the respectable Victorian husband, stepfather and magistrate, whose life gets turned on its head in this year’s festive treat from the National Theatre. He is joined by Nancy Carroll, returning to the NT following her Olivier award-winning performance in After the Dance.

Expect laughs and revelations in The Magistrate, a comic masterpiece by one of Victorian London’s favourite playwrights Arthur Wing Pinero. The sets and costumes bring illustrations of the era brilliantly to life, as well as new songs, written specially for this production by Richard Stilgoe and Richard Sisson.

The Magistrate is the perfect night out, whatever your age. Even if you’re not always entirely honest about it...



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