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Learn more about Kit Harington’s career ahead of ‘Slave Play’ in the West End | London Theatre



Learn more about Kit Harington’s career ahead of ‘Slave Play’ in the West End | London Theatre

Find out more about the Game of Thrones star’s stage career as he returns to the West End in Jeremy O. Harris’s controversial Slave Play.

A theatrical career was almost preordained for Kit Harington, who was named after nonconformist Elizabethan playwright Christopher “Kit” Marlowe.

Best known for his performance as Game of Thrones heartthrob Jon Snow, Harington began his career in theatre and will shortly return to the West End in Jeremy O. Harris’s lauded Slave Play, which follows three interracial couples as they work on their relationships through a highly unusual type of therapy.

Book Slave Play tickets on London Theatre.

Kit Harington’s beginnings

Harington was born in London and moved to Worcestershire at the age of 11. He has cited seeing Ben Whishaw as Hamlet as an influence for pursuing an acting career. He trained at the Central School of Speech and Drama, graduating in 2008.

Following stage roles in War Horse and Posh, Harington became a household name in 2011 when he was cast as Jon Snow in Game of Thrones. One of the show’s most heroic and sympathetic characters, Harington played the role until the show ended 2019 and received an Emmy nomination in 2016 and a Golden Globe nomination in 2018.

Harington’s film roles include Roland Leighton in the film adaptation of Vera Brittain’s Testament of Youth, Pompeii, Spooks: The Greater Good, and The Life & Death of John F. Donovan.

Aside from Game of Thrones, Harington’s television appearances include the police procedural anthology series Criminal UK; romantic comedy anthology series Modern Love, and playing his maternal ancestor Robert Catesby (Harington’s middle name is Catesby), the leader of the Gunpowder Plot in Gunpowder. He’ll shortly be appearing in the third series of Industry, set in the cutthroat world of investment banking.

Slave Play is a huge undertaking for its actors. Harington is far more than a TV star, with many acclaimed stage appearances under his belt. Read on to learn more about Harington’s stage roles.

War Horse

In 2009, Harington was cast in the West End transfer of Nick Stafford’s hugely successful adaptation of Michael Morpurgo’s children’s novel War Horse, directed by Marianne Elliott. Harington played Albert, a country boy (the role was played by Luke Treadaway in the original run at the National Theatre) whose beloved horse, Joey, is sold into the cavalry when World War I breaks out.


Harington took on a far less wholesome role when he played Ed Montgomery in the Royal Court premiere of Laura Wade’s play about the Riot Club of Oxford University (based on the Bullingdon Club), one of a clique of entitled and destructive young men. The show’s roster of up-and-coming talent also included James Norton, Harry Hadden-Paton, and Joshua McGuire.

Doctor Faustus

After Game of Thrones turned Harington into a superstar, he made cameo appearances in The Children’s Monologue at the Royal Court and The Vote at the Donmar Warehouse. He returned to the West End in earnest in 2016 to play the title role in his namesake Christopher Marlowe’s tragedy, directed by Jamie Lloyd. In a review for London Theatre, our critic commented that “the haunted central figure of Kit Harington played Faustus as a troubled millennial with a greedy desire for fame and fortune… Amid the blood the sex and the gore Harington could well be starring in an episode of Game of Thrones, but he manages to weight the production without ever dominating.”

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True West

Two years later, Harington appeared in a revival of American playwright Sam Shepard’s 1980 play about two estranged and very different brothers visiting their mother. The production was directed by Matthew Dunster and Harington starred opposite actor and musician Johnny Flynn. London Theatre’s review noted Harington’s “wary, coiled intensity” in contrast to Flynn’s “more free-form, rock ‘n’ roll ranginess”.

Kit Harington Henry V

Henry V

In 2022, Harington made his professional Shakespearean debut as the warrior king Henry V in Max Webster’s production at the Donmar Warehouse. London Theatre’s review was fulsome in its praise: “Harington is charismatic as the title character, making this distressed character and unsympathetic king likable… Harington takes “Harry” from his boyish partying days into his power-hungry battle cries seamlessly, and there are few actors who can deliver a Shakespearean line as well as he. His St. Crispin’s Day speech is astounding.”

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Slave Play

Harington’s next project is Jeremy O. Harris’s Slave Play, which arrives in the West End with 12 Tony nominations and many strong opinions. Harington plays Jim, a white British man who’s in a relationship with Keneisha, a Black woman. In the first act, he portrays a slave overseer. This challenging and provocative piece can be seen at the Noël Coward Theatre for 12 weeks only from 29 June–21 September.

Book Slave Play tickets on London Theatre.

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