National Theatre Live: Behind the Beautiful Forevers


A new play by David Hare

Based on the book by Katherine Boo

Starring Meera Syal

Directed by Rufus Norris

Screening from April 25, 2015


★★★★ 'A triumph for David Hare and Meera Syal’ Guardian

★★★★ ‘David Hare’s adaptation of Katharine Boo’s acclaimed study of a Mumbai slum breaks new ground for the National’ Observer

★★★★ ‘Compelling. Unforgettably communicates a world in which life is cheap.' Daily Telegraph

★★★★ ‘Magnificent. Rufus Norris’s production has a humane, dignified sweep that captivates’ Independent

Meera Syal (The Kumars, Goodness Gracious Me, Rafta Rafta at the National) returns to the National Theatre, directed by Rufus Norris (Broken, London Road).

Pulizter Prize-winner Katherine Boo spent three years in Annawadi recording the lives of its residents. From her uncompromising book, winner of the National Book Award for Non-Fiction 2012, David Hare has fashioned a tumultuous play on an epic scale.

India is surging with global ambition. But beyond the luxury hotels surrounding Mumbai airport lies a makeshift slum, full of people with plans of their own. Zehrunisa and her son Abdul aim to recycle enough rubbish to fund a proper house. Sunil, twelve and stunted, wants to eat until he’s as tall as Kalu the thief. Asha seeks to steal government anti-poverty funds to turn herself into a ‘first-class person’, while her daughter Manju intends to become the slum’s first female graduate.

But their schemes are fragile; global recession threatens the garbage trade, and another slum-dweller is about to make an accusation that will destroy herself and shatter the neighbourhood. TRAILER IMAGES

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