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Black and white image of a man and woman are holding hands and jumping across the keys of a piano.
Black and white image of a man and woman who are holding hands and jumping across the keys of a piano.

Cold War

Book by Conor McPherson, Music by Elvis Costello, Based on the film by Paweł Pawlikowski, Directed by Rupert Goold

Event details

Thu 30 Nov 2023 - Sat 27 Jan 2024

Poland, 1949.

Zula is bold and brilliant, a singer who ignites the stage. Wiktor is withdrawn and damaged, a composer longing to write. Irresistibly drawn to each other, they dream of escape. But in communist-controlled Poland that can be a dangerous thing.

Based on Paweł Pawlikowski’s Academy Award-nominated film, Cold War is an epic love story spanning the decades and breadth of Europe at its most divided.

Featuring traditional Polish songs, stirring choral arrangements, alongside music from Grammy Award-winner Elvis Costello, Conor McPherson‘s (Girl from the North Country, The Weir) adaptation of Cold War is a compelling story of passion, redemption, and the journey to be free.

Directed by Almeida Artistic Director Rupert Goold (Tammy Faye), this poignant new musical features Anya Chalotra (The Witcher) and Luke Thallon (Patriots).

Cold War is presented in association with Tanya Seghatchian and John Woodward, and Sonia Friedman Productions.

Evenings 7.30pm

Access Performances
Book our access performances by calling Box Office on 020 7359 4404 or email
Audio Described Sat 20 Jan 2pm (Touch Tour 12pm)
Captioned Mon 8 Jan 7.30pm
Relaxed Environment Wed 10 Jan 2pm & 7.30pm

Content Warnings Read more about our production guidance and warnings>

Go inside rehearsals

“It’s an astonishing, tempestuous love story.”

Cast members Anya Chalotra, Elliot Levey, Anastasia Martin, Alžbeta Matyšáková, Luke Thallon and Sophie Maria Wojna take us inside the rehearsal room for Cold War.

Cast & Creatives

  • Cast

  • Band

    Ruth Elder

    Violin/ Steel Guitar

    Ed McFarlane

    Double Bass

    Seb Rudnicki


  • Creatives

    Paweł Pawlikowski

    Original Film Director

    Bryony Blackler

    Sound Associate


The Charlotte Aitken Trust, Dianne Roberts and The Ruddock Foundation for the Arts

CAT Logo   Ruddock Foundation Logo


All concession tickets are limited and subject to availability. Proof of eligibility is required. Concessions in the final week of performances are only valid for Deaf and disabled bookings. More info


Deaf and disabled patrons and a companion can buy discounted tickets by calling the Box Office on 020 7359 4404 or email

25s & Under

£5 tickets will be available to those aged 25 and under for performances from Thu 30 Nov – Wed 6 Dec. Enter code 25UNDER when selecting your seats. Tickets go on sale at 5pm on Mon 6 Nov. More info

30s & Under, Over 65s & Unemployed

If you are aged 30 or under, over 65 or are unemployed you can book tickets at a discounted rate. Not applicable on Fri or Sat evenings.

Talks & Events

After Thu 18 Jan performance
A post-show talk with members of the company. Free to same-day ticket holders.

Almeida For Free
Thu 11 Jan 7.30pm
A free performance for those aged 25 and under. Sign up to our emails for Tickets & Events for 16-25s to be notified when tickets are available.

Four people are sat on chairs on the Almeida stage.

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Artwork image design by Tekin Türe. Photo by Keystone/Getty Images.