Stage and screen stars Niamh Cusack and Patrick Baladi will star at the Ustinov Studio in CHRISTMAS EVE, the brand new thriller by Daniel Kehlmann, the internationally acclaimed author of The Mentor.


It’s Christmas Eve, 2017. A philosophy professor is on her way to celebrate Christmas with her family when she is dragged out of her taxi, bundled into police headquarters and how sits in an interrogation room. Opposite her the senior officer is cynical, smart and relentless. The questioning begins. The police believe they have found incriminating evidence against her. Is a terrorist attack imminent or is this a case of state paranoia? As the hands of the clock turn towards midnight, time is running out. Played out in real time, this powerful thriller pits two powerful antagonists head to head. Both think they are saving their country but only one of them will win.


Niamh Cusack plays Judith prior to appearing as Lady Macbeth opposite Christopher Eccleston at the RSC next year. Her recent screen credits have included the BBC’s epic The Hollow Crown, and she has recently been seen in feature films including The Ghoul and Testament of Youth. Her extensive theatre work includes the National Theatre’s theatrical phenomenon The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time and His Dark MaterialsPlayboy of the Western World and Dancing at Lughnasa at The Old Vic, and Breathing Corpses at the Royal Court.


Patrick Baladi is one of the most recognizable actors on television, known for roles including Neil Godwin in The Office; Stephen Holmes in Marcella; Michael Jackson in Stella and most recently Jimmy Lakewell in the BBC’s award-winning drama Line of Duty. Theatre credits include Battle Royal for the National Theatre and Camino Real for the RSC.


CHRISTMAS EVE reunites director Laurence Boswell, the Olivier Award-winning Artistic Director of the Ustinov Studio, with writer Daniel Kehlmann and translator Christopher Hampton, following on from the phenomenal success of The Mentor, which enjoyed a sell-out run at the Ustinov Studio, followed by a West End transfer, both starring F Murray Abraham.


Daniel Kehlmann is a German-language author whose novel Measuring the World, sold three million copies in Germany alone and has been translated into more than 40 languages. Christopher Hampton also previously translated Florian Zeller’s play The Father for the Ustinov Studio, launching its international success. He won an Academy Award for the adaptation of his own play,Dangerous Liaisons.


Laurence Boswell’s recent productions include A Midsummer Night’s Dream in the Theatre Royal’s Main House; The Mother, Intimate Apparel and The Spanish Golden Age Season in the Ustinov Studio and Trouble in Mind in the Ustinov Studio and at The Print Room.


CHRISTMAS EVE is at the Ustinov Studio from Thursday 19th October – Saturday 18th November. Tickets are on sale now from the Box Office on 01225 448844 or online at


Christmas Eve is the first play in the Ustinov Studio’s season of International UK Premieres. It will be followed by Will Eno’s The Open Housedirected by Michael Boyd, which will run from Thursday 23 November to Saturday 23 December.