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Anya Chalotra and Luke Thallon are sat together on a piano stool holding hands.
Anya Chalotra and Luke Thallon are sat together on a piano stool holding hands.

Cold War

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

Event details

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Thu 30 Nov 2023 - Sat 27 Jan 2024

“One of the best plays of 2023”
The i

The Times, Evening Standard, The Telegraph, Time Out, Financial Times, WhatsOnStage, The Mail on Sunday, The Observer

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 Wiktor is withdrawn and damaged, a composer longing to write.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.

Don’t miss this “tender, tragic love story” (The Telegraph), “brilliantly translated to the stage” (Evening Standard) from Paweł Pawlikowski’s Academy Award-nominated film which spans 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 “doomed love story, brilliantly told” (Evening Standard).

Directed by Almeida Artistic Director Rupert Goold (Tammy Faye), Cold War features “lead performances to die for” (Time Out) from Anya Chalotra (The Witcher) and Luke Thallon (Patriots).

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

Running Time
Approx. 2 hours & 40 mins, incl. an interval

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>

Cold War PROD -8130

How to get tickets

Many performances are now sold out or have limited availability, but you still might be able to get tickets.

Check our ticket guide

Cold War Rehearsals

Go inside rehearsals

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. More info >

Four people are sat on chairs on the Almeida stage.

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