Therese Raquin

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Zola's first important novel (1867) is a hauntingly powerful psychological study, described at the time as 'a steamy story of sexual passion plumbing the murky depths of murder, revenge and retribution'. Therese is trapped in a loveless marriage to Madame Raquin's sickly son, Camille. Seduced by his best friend, Laurent, she conspires with him to murder her husband. Haunted by guilt and by the pervasive presence of Madame Raquin, who has suffered a debilitating stroke, the lovers' passion turns to mutual loathing...First staged in Chichester in 1990, Nicholas Wright's brilliant dramatisation of Therese Raquin receives its London premiere at the National Theatre in the 900-seat Lyttelton. It is directed by Marianne Elliott, whose recent staging there of The Pillars of the Community drew universal praise.