Untold Stories at the Duchess Theatre

Hymn and Cocktail Sticks
by Alan Bennett

Performed as a double bill.

Performance Times:
Monday – Saturday 7.30pm
Wednesday & Saturday 3pm

Untold Stories

Untold Stories at the Duchess Theatre

The National Theatre’s critically-acclaimed double bill transfers to the Duchess Theatre in the West End for a limited run.

Untold Stories features two autobiographical recollections by Alan Bennett. Hymn is a touching memoir of music in childhood, directed by Nadia Fall, with an evocative score by George Fenton.

Cocktail Sticks, directed by Nicholas Hytner, revisits some of the themes and conversations of Alan Bennett’s memoir A Life Like Other People’s. A son talks to his dead father as his mother yearns for a different life. It’s funny, tender and sad.

Alex Jennings plays Alan Bennett in both pieces.

Cast: Alex Jennings
Musicians:  Chris Fish (Music Director), Lisa Bucknell, Kimberly Harrenstein, Jeremy Isaac, Gaelle-Anne Michel, Seila Tammisola, Barbara Zdziarska

Director: Nadia Fall
Designer: Bob Crowley
Lighting Designer: Tom Snell
Music: George Fenton
Sound Designer: Mike Walker

Cocktail Sticks
Cast: Mark Carter, Derek Hutchinson, Alex Jennings, Gabrielle LloydJeff Rawle, Cathy Walker, Sue Wallace

Musicians: Chris Fish (Music Director), Rachel Elliott
Director: Nicholas Hytner
Designer: Bob Crowley
Lighting Designer: Tom Snell
Music: George Fenton
Sound Designer: John Leonard

Listen to Alan Bennett, interviewed by Mark Lawson for Front Row on Radio 4


A pre-show talk with Alan Bennett will be taking place on Tuesday 14th May at 6pm.

Alan Bennett will be talking about his autobiographical works, Untold Stories: Hymn & Cocktail Sticks. This will be followed by a Question and Answer session with the multi-award winning playwright. 

Tickets for the platform can be booked in person at the Duchess Theatre Box Office.

Captioned Performance:
Sat 15 June at 3pm

Audio Introduction

Recorded programme notes for blind and visually impaired people available from theatre seat, using headset, for all performances of Untold Stories

Duchess Theatre
Catherine Street
London WC2

  • War Horse
  • The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
  • Behind the Beautiful Forevers. Collage of a boy on a rubbish heap with a passenger jet flying overhead
  • Treasure Island poster image
  • Dara. Photography by Seamus Ryan
  • The Hard Problem
  • Man and Superman poster, with Ralph Fiennes. Photography by Juergen Teller
  • Rules for Living. Instruction image for combining people and objects
  • Parades banner for Light Shining in Buckinghamshire
  • Everyman - a figure in a bleak space with cartoon finger pointing down at his head
  • Beyond Caring. Curtains against a wall
  • The Beaux' Stratagem - Portrait of an 18th century woman, collaged and retouched
  • The Red Lion. Blurred figure holding a football in a doorway, lit from behind
  • London Road film poster. Cast members leaning and looking through an interior window
  • The Motherf**cker with the Hat. Illustration of a head with a hat but no face
  • We Want You to Watch. Female head with wide open mouth and wide open mouths for eyes
  • An Oak Tree. Instructional diagram of one male figure raising and lowering another with their hand, as if by magic
  • Brainstorm. Teenage boy with blue exploding head
  • wonder.land - a grinning cartoon cat