A photograph of an astronaut with their visor up and smoke pluming dramatically from where their face should be visible.

Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh and Malthouse Theatre, Melbourne present ‘Solaris’

The Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh and Malthouse Theatre, Melbourne present the world premiere of

Directed by Matthew Lutton
Based on the novel by Stanisław Lem
Adapted for the stage by David Greig
Cast including Eamon Farren

  • A co-production between the Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh and Malthouse Theatre, Melbourne, Solaris will form part of Malthouse Theatre’s 2019 Season, and The Lyceum's Season 2019-20. Opening at Malthouse Theatre in June 2019 before transferring to The Lyceum later in the season.
  • Based on the classic sci-fi novel by Stanisław Lem, published in 1961.
  • Previously tackled by film giants Andrei Tarkovsky and Steven Soderbergh, David Greig will adapt the novel for the stage for the first time.
  • Cast will include Eamon Farren, whose recent credits include Richard Horne in Twin Peaks (Amazon Prime) and Cust in The ABC Murders (BBC).
  • Malthouse Theatre, Melbourne return to The Lyceum following the critically acclaimed run of Picnic at Hanging Rock, which had its UK premiere as part of David Greig’s inaugural 2016/17 season.
  • Download the full Press Release here.

The Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh and Malthouse Theatre are delighted to present the world premiere of Solaris, based on Stanisław Lem’s 1961 soviet science fiction novel of the same name.

 ‘Until you experience it,’ said Snow, ‘there’s no point talking about it.’

A cagey comment, but Dr Kris Kelvin took it in her stride… then she experienced it.

Within hours of arriving in orbit around the mercurial planet Solaris, psychologist Kris encounters evasive inhabitants, self-isolating scientists and the ghost of a lover who died long ago.

Yes. Here, on the other side of the galaxy, Earth’s dead live again.

Above an uninhabitable world possessed by a powerful intelligence, the crew are sleepless and lost. They fight with the nature of the planet below, their mission, their own motivations, and the dark horrors of their past that haunt the space station.

Could the planet itself be to blame?

Tarkovsky and Soderbergh have tackled Stanisław Lem’s classic sci-fi novel on screen. Now, The Lyceum and Malthouse Theatre bring this psychological thriller to the stage for the first time. Malthouse Theatre Artistic Director Matthew Lutton applies his bold, stylish direction to a script by Lyceum Artistic Director David Greig, with Eamon Farren (Twin Peaks, Amazon Prime; The ABC Murders, BBC, Amazon Prime) starring alongside an international cast.

Speaking of the production, David Greig said:

“Writing the adaptation for Solaris has been as fascinating as exploring a newly discovered planet. I had no idea Stanisław Lem’s book was so funny, so moving, and such a fascinating philosophical disquisition on the eternal human problem of our relationship with ‘the other’ – whether that other is a person, a planet, a lover or a monster. The premise is simple: there are three scientists on a space station orbiting a great planet, a psychologist arrives to check on their wellbeing, and strange things start to happen – is the planet communicating with them? Or are they imagining it? Is it a god? Or a demon? Or a child?

Tarkovky’s film is moving and atmospheric but discovering the novel was like uncovering a whole new layer – lively and witty and playful and strange – both as familiar and unfamiliar as Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy or Red Dwarf.

But this novel, and our imagining, is also a return to the future as it was conceived in the sixties – science fiction on stage is so often about tin foil, sliding doors and empty space whereas this is about mahogany bookcases, smoking cigarettes and spools of tape.

I’m delighted to have the opportunity to work with Malthouse Theatre again, following the stylishly sinister Picnic at Hanging Rock. Matthew Lutton is an incredible director – creative and cool – and I can’t wait to see him bring the script to life with our international cast.”