Marsha Normans 1983 Pulitzer Prize-winning drama has made its way back into its home theatre, Hampstead Theatre, with Stockard Channing and Rebecca Night bringing it back to life in 2021. There are very few relationships that can match the one between a mother and daughter, and ‘night Mother certainly captures the intensity, the guilt and the affection that is mostly felt in these relationships.
This story takes place in an open plan kitchen/ living room brilliantly designed by Ti Green, complemented by beautiful lighting designed by Rick Fisher. Comedically blunt, the direction of this play was changed almost immediately when daughter Jessie (Rebecca Night) says to her mama (Stockard Channing) “I’m going to kill myself, mama.” A lot of emotions are followed and portrayed through this play hereafter, with extreme relevance to the isolation many have felt throughout the pandemic in 2020. While this play touched on issues and subjects surrounding mental health and mental state, which doesn’t get expressed in theatre very often, I can’t help but feel this play kept chasing its tail around and around in circles not moving forward or changing pace.
This slow-burn play had all the ingredients to be a great story, however upon watching I can’t help but feel something was missing; a spark. The mother-daughter chemistry between Stockard Channing and Rebecca Night was acutely accurate. Filled with maternal regret and guilt we see Thelma (mama) try to wrap her head around the event that has just been announced questioning her motherhood, and all of her actions surrounding the upbringing of epileptic daughter Jessie. Throughout this play, we are given countless reasons to live and on the other side of that were given all the reasons why that isn’t possible at the moment.
The conversations of childhood trauma, a mum that can’t let her little girl go and the emotionless defeat Jessie has is portrayed fabulously by Stockard Channing and Rebecca Night, however, their performance seems to have been let down by the lack of bite this story has. The concept of the last conversation and a last hooray is still very relevant in today’s society, however, in the last 40 years, audiences have changed.
The generational gap we see in this play is still very clear and prominent in today’s society and helps reflect the relationship some daughters have with their mothers. The subtle sexism we see in baby boomer parents hits many people close to home. If this play has taught us anything it’s how the roles of parenthood change as we grow older and how damaging that can be to the children in this situation, who are still trying to work through traumas from their childhood. The emotionally powerful moments that came throughout this play did not have the emotional conviction they needed to capture the audience wholeheartedly. Overall, this play gives a touching insight into the consequences of rural isolation and the cabin fever many people have come in contact with over the last 18 months and will continue to be relevant for many years to come.
They met in an alley in Bogget-on-Sea, and life was never the same again for this oddest of odd couples. This is a love story with a difference, as you might expect from a piece that’s being staged as part of London Horror Festival. It’s surreal and supernatural, but at heart, it’s about longing, passion and humanity.
It’s the tale of Molly, with her dreadful job and even more dreadful colleagues, dumped by her vicar husband for another woman. Salsa was her first love – and has been the one thing to bring joy to her life. She’s hankering to return to her ‘happy place’. Her dream (nightmare?) man is the mysterious man in black, JD (Mr de Mon, as he calls himself). He makes a mean apple turnover, but doesn’t like to be touched and refuses to take his hat off indoors. Her colleagues refuse to believe he exists.
The attraction appears to be one way, but the reason is revealed when he finally removes his hat and shows his more demonic, but ultimately more caring side. The power of salsa wins out, but it’s bittersweet.
They say revenge is a dish served cold, but pineapple rings and potato chips do a great job here… to say any more would be giving away the plot.
A love story based in fantasy, this is played with both emotion and humour: it feels real, despite the sinister undertones, and this is down to the strength of Sasha Ravencroft’s script and the portrayal of the characters.
As a two-hander in a minimalist set, the performances of both players are vital and here Helen Walling-Richards as Molly outshone Daniel Singh Pabla as JD (though he did a mean salsa), who seemed slightly nervous, which meant some of the humour was lost. All in all, this compact piece, at 60 minutes, is a nicely rounded tale that played well in the intimate space at Islington’s Pleasance Theatre.
London Horror Festival is now in its tenth year, with pieces from the genre playing across the capital for the two weeks running up to Hallowe’en.
The Ballad of Johnny Longstaff is the true story of Johnny Longstaff, told by the Young ‘Uns, a folk trio from Teesside. In 2015 The Young ‘Uns became aware of Johnny’s story after his son approached them in the hope of them writing a song about his father. With hours of recordings and a fascinating story about a young man’s refusal to give up and let fascism win, they soon realised one song would not do Johnny justice.
They tell Johnny’s story through music with Johnny’s own recordings of his life integrated throughout. We learn of Johnny’s life through the 1930s starting as an unemployed 15-year-old travelling to London as part of the Hunger Marches, Johnny then finds himself at the Battle of Cable Street and realises he wants to continue fighting for what is right. He then decides to volunteer to fight fascism in the Spanish Civil War.
This story will leave you realising how lucky we are to have had people like Johnny stand up and fight for what they believe in and what was right. Johnny was a true hero and the way the Young ‘Uns tell his story is fantastic. They use a mixture of songs, Johnny’s own voice and animation to really bring his story to life. All three have lovely voices and are extremely talented. They make you see what it must have been like for those young men suffering so much yet still fighting for what was right. Despite the story being about Johnny suffering through poverty, going to war and seeing his friends killed they still manage to find humour in his story.
I would highly recommend this fascinating true story told in such a unique way.
The Olivier Award-winning and critically-acclaimed production of Edmond Rostand’s Cyrano de Bergerac, freely adapted by Martin Crimp, with James McAvoy returns, playing in London, Glasgow and New York
Anton Chekhov’s The Seagull, in a version by Anya Reiss, starring Emilia Clarke returns, opening at the Harold Pinter Theatre, 29 June – 10 September 2022
The company continues its commitment to accessible tickets with 12,000 £15 tickets available across the UK dates of Cyrano de Bergerac and The Seagull
5,000 free tickets will be available for The Seagull for those with limited access to the arts
Zawe Ashton, Soutra Gilmour, Mika Onyx Johnson and Nima Taleghani announced as new Associate Artists
Jade Anouka, Rachel De-lahay, Anya Reiss and Associate Artist Nima Taleghani announced as writers under commission
The Jamie Lloyd Company: Emerge recommences with a further opportunity for a new Emerge creative
The Jamie Lloyd Company,the hugely successful partnership between the UK’s leading theatre company Ambassador Theatre Group (ATG) and Artistic Director Jamie Lloyd, today announces the return of the critically-acclaimed, Olivier Award-winning production of Edmond Rostand’s Cyrano de Bergerac, freely adapted by Martin Crimp, with James McAvoy. The production runs at the Harold Pinter Theatre in London from 3 February – 12 March, before visiting Theatre Royal Glasgow, 18 – 26 March, and completing its run at Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), 5 April – 22 May 2022.
Returning to the cast alongside James McAvoy (Cyrano de Bergerac) are Michele Austin (Ragueneau), AdamBest (Le Bret), Sam Black (Armand), Nari Blair-Mangat (Valvert), VaneekaDadhria (Beatboxer), AdrianDerGregorian (Montfleury), Tom Edden (De Guiche), EbenFigueiredo (Christian), Carla Harrison-Hodge (Denise), Mika Onyx Johnson (Usher), NimaTaleghani (Ligniere) and Brinsley Terence (Theatre Owner), joined by Jon Furlong (Annoying Person), Tazmyn-May Gebbett (Minder), Joseph Langdon (Jean-Paul), Luyanda Unati Lewis-Nyawo (Marie-Louise) and Evelyn Miller (Roxane).
Anton Chekhov’s The Seagull in a version by Anya Reiss opens at the Harold Pinter Theatre on 6 July, with previews from 29 June, running until 10 September 2022, having closed during previews in March 2020 due to the pandemic. Returning to the company are Emilia Clarke (Nina), Tom Rhys Harries (Trigorin), Daniel Monks (Konstantin), Indira Varma (Arkadina) and Sophie Wu (Masha), with Katie Buchholz, Tina Harris and Joseph Langdon. Further cast to be announced.
Continuing the company’s commitment to accessibility, 12,000 tickets priced at £15 will be available across the UK productions, with 75% specifically for under 30s, key workers and those receiving government benefits. In addition, The Seagull continues the company’s original commitment, offering 5,000 free tickets for those with limited access to the arts.
Jamie Lloyd said today, “It is incredibly exciting to confirm the return of these productions and, most importantly, the continuation of our access ticket schemes, with 12,000 £15 seats across the productions and 5000 totally free tickets, which will enable people with limited access to the theatre to experience our work — an important commitment as our industry builds back.
“Alongside our brilliant Emerge participants, we’re thrilled to be welcoming more adventurous artists into the company with the announcement of our new Associate Artists and our writers under commission, who will create bold, radical reappraisals of some iconic international plays. Together, they represent the most exciting and innovative talent working in British theatre today.”
The company also announces the appointment of Zawe Ashton, Soutra Gilmour, Mika Onyx Johnson and Nima Taleghani as Associate Artists. They take up their roles from 1 November and are appointed for making an outstanding contribution to the life and reputation of the company’s work.
The associateship gives the artists opportunities to develop their own practice and to embed themselves further into the future of the company’s productions and outreach work.
Zawe Ashton, Associate Artist, said today, “It’s a pleasure to be joining The Jamie Lloyd Company as an Associate Artist alongside Soutra Gilmour, Mika Onyx Johnson and Nima Taleghani. I have collaborated with Jamie as an actor for over a decade and his company are deeply committed to theatrical experiences that are not only of the highest quality, but that continue to challenge the status quo in the industry. As a company, I know we can help to rebuild theatre in the most exacting times in the most holistic way possible.”
Further to this, The Jamie Lloyd Company announces the development of new work, with commissions from writers Jade Anouka, Rachel De-lahay, Anya Reiss and Associate Artist Nima Taleghani. More details to be announced.
In addition, TheJamie Lloyd Company: Emerge, a talent development programme offering a first step into the industry through paid mentorship recommences with the inaugural participants, Rona Berisha Castrioti (Sound Design), Alessandra Davison (Director), Rida Hamidou (Writer), Maeve Roscoe (Writer) and Spiky Saul (Director). Also, the company will welcome a new Emerge creative. This paid industry mentorship is aimed specifically at writer/performers exploring spoken word, rap or hip hop. The creative will be mentored by Cyrano de Bergerac company member and Associate Artist, Taleghani. Application information will be announced in late November.
Tickets for Cyrano de Bergerac in the UK will be available to ATG Theatre Card Members on Monday 1 November at 10am, and those signed up for priority booking at 12pm; general booking opens Wednesday 3 November at 10am; and for BAM will be available to theatre members on 3 November, American Express Card Members on 10 November, with general booking from 15 November.
The Seagull will be on sale to ATG Theatre Card Members on Monday 10 January at 10am, and those signed up for priority booking at 12pm; general booking opens Wednesday 12 January at 10am.
Individuals can sign up for priority booking access for both productions here: thejamielloydcompany.com
There will be further news on the company’s postponed production of Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House announced in due course.
CYRANO DE BERGERAC
Freely adapted by Martin Crimp
Directed by Jamie Lloyd;Designed by Soutra Gilmour; Lighting Design by Jon Clark
Sound and Composition by Ben and Max Ringham; Fight Movement by Kate Waters
Casting by Stuart Burt CDG; Additional movement by Polly Bennett
Costume Supervision by Anna Josephs; Props Supervision by Lily Molgaard
Associate Direction by Rupert Hands; Assistant Direction by Nari Blair-Mangat
Associate Design by Rachel Wingate
Harold Pinter Theatre: 3 February – 12 March 2022
Theatre Royal Glasgow: 18 – 26 March 2022
Brooklyn Academy of Music, New York: 5 April – 22 May 2022
Fierce with a pen and notorious in combat, Cyranoalmost has it all — if only he could win the heart of his true love. There’s just one big problem: he has a nose as huge as his heart. Will a society engulfed by narcissism get the better of De Bergerac — or can his mastery of language set Roxane’s world alight?
Produced by Ambassador Theatre Group Productions, Benjamin Lowy Productions, Glass Half Full Productions and Gavin Kalin Productions
Martin Crimp’s theatre credits include WhenWeHaveSufficientlyTorturedEachOther, IntheRepublicofHappiness, PlayHouse, TheCity, FewerEmergencies, CruelandTender, The Country, AttemptsonHerLife, TheTreatment, Play with Repeats, Dealingwith Clair, Definitely the Bahamas, Four Attempted Acts and Living Remains. His work in the UK has been produced by Orange Tree Theatre, West Yorkshire Playhouse, Stephen Joseph Theatre, RSC, Young Vic and the Royal Court Theatre where he was writer-in-residence in 1997. In New York his work has been seen at the Public Theater and the Classic Stage Company, as well as on Broadway.
Michele Austin plays Ragueneau. Her theatre credits include The Hunt, Medea, The Chain Play (Almeida Theatre), White Teeth (Kiln Theatre), Instructions for Correct Assembly, Breath Boom, Been So Long (Royal Court Theatre), The Seagull (Lyric Hammersmith), Pride and Prejudice (Sheffield Theatres), The House That Will Not Stand, The Riots (Tricycle Theatre), I Know How I Feel About Eve, Out in the Open (Hampstead Theatre), To Kill a Mockingbird (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Sixty-Six Books (Bush Theatre), Generations (Young Vic), and Our Country’s Good (Out of Joint/Young Vic). For television, her work includes Meet the Richardsons, The Dumping Ground, Dark Heart, The Coroner, Casual Vacancy, Death in Paradise, Harry & Paul, Secret Life, The Canterbury Tales and Gimme Gimme; and for film, The Children’s Act, What We Did on Our Holidays, Parking Wars, Another Year, The Infidel, Valentine’s Day, All or Nothing and Secrets and Lies.
AdamBest plays Le Bret. His theatre credits include The Beauty Queen of Leenane (Lyric Hammersmith/Chichester Festival Theatre), The Duchess of Malfi (Royal Lyceum Theatre/Citizen’s Theatre), Medicine (Hope Theatre), The Girl on The Train (West Yorkshire Playhouse), HeddaGabler, The Silver Tassie (National Theatre/UK tour), Lions and Tigers (Shakespeare’s Globe), Twelfth Night, The Plough and The Stars, (National Theatre), His Restless House, Hamlet (Citizen’s Theatre), Flare Path, Our Country’s Good, The Golden Dragon, Journey’s End (UK tour), The Deep Blue Sea (The Watermill Theatre), Long Day’s Journey into Night (Royal Lyceum Theatre), Crime and Punishment, (Citizen’s Theatre/Liverpool Everyman), Public Enemy (Young Vic), The Woman in Black (Fortune Theatre), Northern Star (Finborough Theatre), Pieces of Vincent (Arcola Theatre), Truckstop (Company of Angels) and By the Bog of Cats (Wyndham’s Theatre). His television credits include as series regular Matt Parker in HolbyCity, Waking the Dead and The Catherine Tate Show; and for film, The Little Stranger, Cup Cake and Blooded.
Sam Black reprises his role as Armand/Priest, having made his professional stage debut in the original production.
Nari Blair-Mangat plays Valvert. His theatre credits include Colour is too Sweet (King’s Head Theatre), A Cord of Three Strands (RADA Festival), People, Places & Things (National Theatre /Wyndham’s Theatre), Macbeth (Manchester International Festival/Park Avenue Armory, NYC), Othello (Leicester Square Theatre), The Duchess of Malfi (The Old Vic) and Piaf (Vaudeville Theatre/Donmar Warehouse). His television credits include Temple; and for film Murder on the Orient Express, Cinderella, Spectre and Terry.
VaneekaDadhria reprises her role as Beatboxer, having made her professional stage debut in the original production. Her other theatre credits include Unite – It’s Not as Simple as Black and White and The Lucky Mother Summons Francis Galton (New Vic Theatre).
Adrian Der Gregorian plays Montfleury. His theatre credits include Made in Dagenham (Adelphi Theatre), Sweet Smell of Success (Arcola Theatre), Road Show (Menier Chocolate Factory), The Rocky Horror Show (UK tour), Once in a Lifetime (Young Vic), Mr Burns (Almeida Theatre) and Love and Understanding (Trident Theatre). His television credits include W1A.
Tom Edden plays De Guiche. His credits for the company Pinter Three (Pinter at the Pinter) and Doctor Faustus (Duke of York’s Theatre). Other theatre credits include One Man, Two Guvnors (National Theatre/Theatre Royal Haymarket/Music Box Theatre – Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Featured Actor, and was nominated for a Tony and Critic’s Circle Award for his role), Our Town (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Matilda (RSC/Cambridge Theatre), The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (Donmar Warehouse), Amadeus (National Theatre), Peter Pan Goes Wrong (Apollo Theatre), Measure for Measure (Young Vic), Les Misérables (Queen’s Theatre) and Oliver! (Sheffield Theatres). His television credits include The Singapore Grip, Upstart Crow, The Scandalous Lady W and Doctor Who; and for film Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens, Cinderella and Mr. Turner.
EbenFigueiredo plays Christian. His theatre credits include A Christmas Carol (Bridge Theatre), Young Marx (The Bridge Theatre), Primetime (Royal Court Theatre), Ross, Pit Cairn (Chichester Festival Theatre), Peter Pan (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre) and Around the World in 80 Days (St James Theatre); and for film, Solo: A Star Wars Story and Daphne.
Jon Furlong makes his professional stage debut playing Annoying Person. His television credits include All Creatures Great and Small, Ghosts and The Last Kingdom; and for film, Mrs Lowry and Son and Welcome to No Man’s Land.
Tazmyn-May Gebbett plays Minder. She is appearing in the upcoming Our Last First at Union Theatre.
Carla Harrison-Hodge plays Denise/Medic. Her theatre credits Amadeus (National Theatre), Hillside (Park Theatre), The Fruit Trilogy, Avocado and Pomegranate (Southbank Centre/ West Yorkshire Playhouse), #Caste (Arcola Theatre), Sweatin’ It Out (Theatre Royal Stratford East), The Boyband (The Pleasance) and Can’t Stand Up For Falling Down (The Lantern Theatre). Her television credits include M.O.T.H.E.R Knows Best, Four Weddings and a Funeral, Year of the Rabbit, Cuffs, I Want My Wife Back and Fresh Meat.
Mika Onyx Johnson plays Usher and is an Associate Artist with the company. Theatre credits as an actor include Boxes (Purple Theatre), Chessboard Society (Curve, Leicester), Behind Closed Doors (Lakeside Arts Centre, Nottingham) and #FaceMe (Contact, Manchester); and as a writer, Pink Lemonade (Edinburgh Festival Fringe/Bush Theatre – also performer), and My White Best Friend and Other Letters Left Unsaid (Part 2) (Bunker Theatre).
Joseph Langdon plays Jean-Paul. Histheatre credits include Equus (Trafalgar Studios), Harper Regan (Tabard Theatre) and Richard II (Thekla).
Luyanda Unati Lewis-Nyawo plays Marie-Louise. Her theatre credits include Macbeth, Generations (Chichester Festival Theatre) and The Convert (Young Vic). Her television credits include Devs and The Dungeon Run.
James McAvoy plays Cyrano de Bergerac. For The Jamie Lloyd Company: Cyrano de Bergerac (Playhouse, nominated for Olivier Award for Best Actor); Macbeth (Trafalgar Studios, nominated for Olivier Award for Best Actor); The Ruling Class (Trafalgar Studios, London Evening Standard Award for Best Actor, nominated for Olivier Award for Best Actor, nominated for WhatsOnStage Award for Best Actor). Theatre credits include: Three Days of Rain (Apollo, nominated for Olivier Award for Best Actor); Breathing Corpses (Royal Court); Privates on Parade (Donmar); Lovers (Edinburgh Lyceum); Out in the Open (Hampstead Theatre); The Reel of The Hanged Man (Tron Glasgow). Film credits include: My Son; Together; The Last King of Scotland (European Film Academy Award for Best Actor, nominated for Best Actor Awards from BAFTA, BIFA and London Film Critics Circle); Glass; Filth (BIFA Award for Best Actor); Atonement (London Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor, UK Regional Critics Award for Best Actor, the Virtuoso Award from the Santa Barbara Film Festival, nominated for Best Actor Awards from Golden Globe and BAFTA); Split; X-Men: Dark Phoenix; IT: Chapter Two; Inside I’m Dancing (nominated for London Film Critics Circle Award for Best British Actor); The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (nominated for the London Film Critics Circle Award for Best British Actor in a Supporting Role); X-Men: First Class; Becoming Jane; Penelope; Wanted; The Conspirator; Gnomeo And Juliet; Arthur Christmas; Welcome To The Punch; Trance; The Disappearance Of Eleanor Rigby; X-Men: Days Of Future Past; Victor Frankenstein; X-Men: Apocalypse; Atomic Blonde; Submergence; Sherlock Gnomes. Television credits include: His Dark Materials; White Teeth; State of Play; Regeneration; Band of Brothers; Shameless (British Comedy Award for Best Comedy Newcomer); Watership Down.
Evelyn Miller plays Roxane. Her theatre credits include The Taming of the Shrew, Deep Night, Dark Night, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Twelfth Night, The Comedy of Errors, Pericles (Shakespeare’s Globe), Jane Eyre (National Theatre/UK tour), Richard III (international tour), Richard II, Henry V, The Famous Victories of Henry V, Henry IV Parts I and II (RSC), Swallows and Amazons (Bristol Old Vic), Romeo and Juliet (Orange Tree Theatre), Peer Gynt (Barbican) and The Little Prince (Royal Opera House).
NimaTaleghani plays Ligniere. He is also an Associate Artist, and a writer under commission with the company. His theatre credits include Macbeth (Royal Exchange Theatre), Armadillo (Yard Theatre), The Merry Wives of Windsor, Romeo and Juliet (RSC), Laika (Unicorn Theatre), Summit (UK tour), Blasted (Styx), The Plough and the Stars (US and Irish tour) and Mercury Fur (Hull Truck Theatre). His television credits include Danny Boy and Hatton Garden; and for film 90 Minutes and Dublin Oldschool. He is the London Ambassador for the National Student Drama Festival, Ambassador for Big Creative Academy and has been an artist mentor in partnership with the National Theatre, BBC, Barbican Centre, Slung Low, Royal Shakespeare Company, American Repertory Theatre, Arts Against Racism, Camden Youth Theatre, DaDa Fest, Company3, Missing Link and more. He is also a tutor at Drama Studio London.
Brinsley Terence plays Theatre Owner. His theatre credits include Downstate (National Theatre). For television, his credits include Tyrant and Murders, Mysteries and Scandals; and for film, ISIS: Conspiracy of Terror and The Down Staircase.
A version by Anya Reiss
Harold Pinter Theatre: 29 June – 10 September 2022
Directed by Jamie Lloyd; Designed by Soutra Gilmour; Lighting Design by Jackie Shemesh
Sound and Composition by George Dennis; Casting by Stuart Burt CDG
Costume Supervision by Anna Josephs; Props Supervision by Fahmida Bakht
Associate Direction by Jonathan Glew; Associate Design by Rachel Wingate
‘We need the theatre, couldn’t, couldn’t do without it. Could we?’
A young woman is desperate for fame and a way out. A young man is pining after the woman of his dreams. A successful writer longs for a sense of achievement. An actress wants to fight the changing of the times. In an isolated home in the countryside where dreams are in tatters, hopes dashed, hearts broken and there is nowhere left to turn, the only option is to turn on each other.
Produced by Ambassador Theatre Group Productions, Benjamin Lowy Productions, Glass Half Full Productions and Gavin Kalin Productions
Anya Reiss’ playwriting credits include Oliver Twist (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Uncle Vanya (St James’ Theatre), Spring Awakening (UK tour), Three Sisters (Southwark Playhouse), and The Acid Test and Spur of the Moment (Royal Court Theatre); and as screenwriter her credits include Ackley Bridge and EastEnders.
Emilia Clarke plays Nina. Theatre credits include Breakfast at Tiffany’s (Cort). Film credits include Last Christmas; Solo: A Star Wars Story; Me Before You; Terminator: Genisys; Dom Hemingway; Spike Island. Television credits include Game of Thrones (nominated for 2013, 2015 and 2016 Emmy Awards for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series, nominated for 2019 Emmy Awards for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series).
Tom Rhys Harries plays Trigorin. His theatre credits include Tumulus (VAULT Festival), The Pitchfork Disney (Shoreditch Town Hall), Dedication (Nuffield Southampton Theatres), Creditors (Young Vic), Four Play (The Old Vic), Mojo (Harold Pinter Theatre), The History Boys (Sheffield Theatres) and Torch Song Trilogy (Menier Chocolate Factory). His television credits include White Lines, Britannia, 15 Days, Merched Parchus, Unforgotten, Chewing Gum, Hinterland, Jekyll and Hyde, Under Milk Wood, If I Don’t Come Home: Letters from D-Day, Parade’s End; and for film, The Gentlemen, Slaughterhouse Rulez, Dragonheart: Battle for the Heartfire, Crow, Hot Property, Iron Clad: Battle for Blood and Hunky Dory.
Daniel Monks plays Konstantin. His theatre credits include The Normal Heart (National Theatre), Teenage Dick (Donmar Warehouse – Winner of Best Performer in a Play at The Stage Debut Awards 2020), Lord of the Flies (Sydney Theatre Company) and The Real and Imagined History of The Elephant Man (Malthouse Theatre, Sydney – for which he was nominated for a Helpmann Award and Green Room Award for Best Lead Actor in a Play). For film, he wrote, produced, edited and starred in Pulse – which won the Busan Bank Award at the Busan International Film Festival 2017 and for which he was nominated for the Australian Academy Award (AACTA) for Best Lead Actor in a Film. He is an Ambassador for the Starlight Children’s Foundation, and in 2018, he was named the Ambassador for People with Disabilities Australia at the 40th Sydney Mardi Gras Parade.
Indira Varma plays Arkadina. Her theatre credits for the company include The Hothouse (Trafalgar Studios). Other theatre credits include Faith Healer, Present Laughter – Olivier Award for Best Supporting Actress in a play (The Old Vic), The Treatment, Five Gold Rings (Almeida Theatre), Exit the King, Man and Superman, Ivanov, Remembrance of Things Past, Othello (National Theatre), Tiger County (Hampstead Theatre), Titus Andronicus (Shakespeare’s Globe), The Dance of Death (Donmar Trafalgar), Twelfth Night (Donmar Warehouse/Wyndham’s Theatre), The Vortex, Privates on Parade (Donmar Warehouse), Ingredient X, The Vertical Hour, The Country (Royal Court Theatre), Hysteria (Theatre Royal Bath), The Skin of Our Teeth (Young Vic), Celebration (Almeida Theatre/Lincoln Centre/Harold Pinter Theatre). Her television credits include as series regular Ellaria Sand in Game of Thrones and as Zoe Luther in Luther. Her other television work includes This Way Up, For Life, Carnival Row, Patrick Melrose, Paranoid, What Remains, Silk, Remains, Rome and Indian Summer; and for film, Crisis, The One & Only Ivan, Official Secrets, Close, Exodus: Gods and Kings and Una.
Sophie Wu plays Masha. Her theatre credits include Vassa (Almeida Theatre), Sketching (Wilton’s Music Hall), Shopping and F**king (Hammersmith Apollo), The Callous Corruption of Wesley McBunion (Paines Plough), Punk Rock (Royal Exchange Theatre/Lyric Hammersmith), The Wood Orchid (Bush Theatre,) and The Table (National Theatre). Her television credits include The Break, New Blood, Horrible Histories, Babylon, The Midnight Beast, FreshMeat, Black Mirror, The Fades; and for film, WildChild, Tormented, Kick-Ass, Kick-Ass2 and Tonight You’re Mine. Her theatre credits as a writer include Ramona Tells Jim (Bush Theatre) and Sophie Wu Is Minging and Looks Like She’s Dead (Edinburgh Festival Fringe/Soho Theatre).
Jamie Lloyd directs. His credits for the company include Betrayal (Pinter at the Pinter, Harold Pinter Theatre/ Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre – nominated for four 2021 Tony Awards including Best Direction of a Play and Best Revival of a Play), Pinter One, Two, Three, Six and Seven (Pinter at the Pinter, Harold Pinter Theatre), The Maids, The Homecoming, The Ruling Class, Richard III, The Pride, The Hothouse, Macbeth (Trafalgar Studios).
Zawe Ashton is an actor and writer. Her theatre credits for the company include Betrayal (Harold Pinter Theatre/Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre). Her other theatre credits as an actor include The Maids (Trafalgar Studios), Splendour (Donmar Warehouse), Gone too Far!, Rhinoceros, The Arsonists (Royal Court Theatre), and Othello and The Frontline (Shakespeare’s Globe); and as a playwright her credits include for all the women who thought they were Mad, Harm’sWay, Skunk and She from the Sea. Her television credits include The Handmaid’s Tale, Wanderlust, Guerrilla, Fresh Meat and Not Safe for Work; and for film, Velvet Buzzsaw, Greta, Nocturnal Animals, Dreams of a Life and St Trinian’s: The Legend of Fritton’s Gold. Ashton’s debut novel, Character Breakdown, was published this year.
Soutra Gilmour is a designer and long-term collaborator of Jamie Lloyd. Her theatre credits include Antigone, Moon on a Rainbow Shawl, Double Feature In The Paint Frame, Shadow of A Boy (National Theatre), Duchess of Malfi (The Old Vic), Reasons to be Pretty (Almeida Theatre), Inadmissible Evidence, Polar Bears (Donmar Warehouse), Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf (Sheffield Theatre/Northern Stage), In a Forest Dark and Deep (Vaudeville Theatre), The Little Dog Laughed (Garrick Theatre), Three Days of Rain (Apollo Theatre), The Pride (Royal Court Theatre), The Tragedy of Thomas Hobbes (Wilton’s Music Hall), Piaf (Donmar Warehouse/Vaudeville Theatre/Teatro Liceo, Buenos Aires), The Lover and The Collection (Comedy Theatre), Our Friends in the North, Ruby Moon, Son of Man (Northern Stage), Last Easter (Bimingham Rep), Angels in America (Headlong/Lyric Hammersmith), Bad Jazz, Brief History of Helen of Troy (ATC), The Birthday Party (Sheffield Theatres), The Caretaker (Sheffield Theatres/Tricycle Theatre), Petrol Jesus Nightmare # 5 (Traverse Theatre/Kosovo), Lovers and War (Strindbergs Intima Theater, Stockholm), Hair, Witness (The Gate), Baby Doll, Thérèse Raquin (Citizens Theatre, Glasgow), Ghost City (59e59,New York), When the World Was Green (Young Vic), Modern Dance for Beginners (Soho Theatre) and Through the Leaves (Duchess Theatre/Southwark Playhouse). Her opera credits include Down by the Greenwood Side/Into The little Hill (Royal Opera House) Anna Bolena, Don Giovanni, Mary Stuart (English Touring Opera), The Shops (Bregenz Festival), The Birds, Trouble In Tahiti (The Opera Group), El Cimmarron (Queen Elizabeth Hall), Saul, Hansel and Gretel (Opera North), A Better Place (English National Opera) and Girl of Sand (Almeida Opera).
Mika Onyx Johnson – please find biography above.
Nima Taleghani – please find biography above.
Jade Anouka writing credits include the short film Her & Her for BBC. She is a Screen International Star of Tomorrow (2017), recipient of The Stage Award for Acting Excellence and Ian Charleson Award Commendations. Recent theatre credits include The Phlebotomist (Hampstead Theatre), Queen Margaret (Royal Exchange Theatre), The Greatest Wealth, Cover My Tracks (The Old Vic), Moon On A Rainbow Shawl (National Theatre), Omeros, Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet (Globe Theatre) and the Donmar Warehouse all-female Shakespeare Trilogy, playing the roles of Ariel in The Tempest, Mark Antony in Julius Caesar and Hotspur in Henry IV, all directed by Phyllida Lloyd. Television credits include His Dark Materials, The Drowning, Small Axe, Cleaning Up, Trauma (ITV), and Turn Up Charlie (Netflix). For film, her credits include Ear for Eye, Zebra Girl, Last Christmas and Fisherman’s Friends. As a poet she has performed regularly around London including featured spots at The Southbank Centre, Richmix and The Roundhouse, and has had poems commissioned by Audible UK and Stylist Magazine. She also did a Ted Talk on the subject of Being Black, being a Woman, being ‘Other’.
Rachel De-lahay‘stheatre credits includeherdebut The Westbridge (Royal Court Theatre – winner of the Writers Guild Award for Best Play and Alfred Fagon Award), Routes (Royal Court Theatre – winner of the Charles Wintour Award for Most Promising Playwright at the Evening Standard Awards), Circles (Birmingham Rep/Tricycle Theatre) and My White Best Friend, which saw her collaborate with and commission a number of established and emerging voices in theatre under the Bunker Theatre and the Royal Court Theatre. Her television credits include Kiri and The Eddy, as well as a writer on episodes of The Feed and Noughts and Crosses.
Heathers the Musical– thewickedly funny and high-octane rock musical returns to its original London home at The Other Palace, opening on 25 November 2021, for a season until 20 February 2022.
Produced by Bill Kenwright and Paul Taylor-Mills, the musical started its UK journey with a cult following and was a box office record-breaker at The Other Palace in 2018, before transferring to the Theatre Royal Haymarket for a limited season later that year. The production then returned to the Haymarket and played a hugely successful summer season this year, kick-starting the West End’s pandemic recovery.
With a dazzling book, music and lyrics by Kevin Murphy and Laurence O’Keefe, Heathers the Musical is based on one of the greatest cult teen films of all time, and starred Winona Ryder and Christian Slater. The production is directed by Andy Fickman, withchoreography by Thriller Live’s Gary Lloyd, designs by David Shields, lighting by Ben Cracknell and sound by Dan Samson.
Casting will be announced in due course.
Westerberg High’s Veronica Sawyer is just another nobody dreaming of a better day. But when she joins the beautiful and impossibly cruel Heathers, her dreams of popularity may finally come true. Mysterious teen rebel JD teaches her that it might kill to be a nobody, but it is murder being a somebody…
The UK premiere of Heathers the Musical enjoyed two record-breaking opening seasons, launching at London’s The Other Palace and transferring to the Theatre Royal Haymarket in 2018; going on to win the WhatsOnStage award for Best New Musical 2019.
The production before embarked on its Number 1. UK and Ireland tour this summer. The tour continues its run this autumn-winter calling at Brighton, Wimbledon, Bristol, Milton Keynes, High Wycombe and Cardiff, completing its run in Edinburgh on 11 December 2021.
Bill Kenwright & Paul Taylor-Mills present
HEATHERS THE MUSICAL
Book, Music & Lyrics by Laurence O’Keefe & Kevin Murphy
Directed by Andy Fickman
Associate Director and Choreography by Gary Lloyd
Design by David Shields
Lighting by Ben Cracknell
Sound by Dan Samson
Venue: The Other Palace
Dates: 25 November 2021 – 20 February 2022
Running Time: Approx. 2 hours 30 minutes including interval
Godalming’s Cinderella helps more people to enjoy the magic of Panto this December through its Pay What You Can scheme
Even more theatre-goers shall go to the ball as Wysch Productions is again offering a Pay What You Can scheme at The Borough Hall, Godalming, to help those who would not otherwise be able to attend a Pantomime this year due to financial restraints. Cinderella, from 11 – 26 December 2021, is open to all.
Producer Nick Wyschna said: “I’m over the moon to be able to bring back our Pay What You Can tickets. We are a professional Pantomime for the community of Godalming and I believe everyone should have the chance to see Cinderella. Just send us a message via our website (www.godalmingpanto.com) or social media, or telephone the Box Office on 01483 361101, and we’ll sort your tickets out for you!”
Terms and conditions apply and the offer is subject to availability. No refunds or exchanges are available on Pay What You Can tickets.
Cast and creatives, as previously announced, are as follows: Stephanie Costi, who is currently in her final year of training at Guildford School of Acting, is delighted that she shall go to the ball as Godalming’s very own Cinderella. Her fabulous sparkly Fairy Godmother will be played by Emily Cochrane. This traditional family Panto wouldn’t be complete without the Ugly Sisters to make Cinderella’s life a misery, and Josh Bamling as Astra and Christian Andrews as Zeneca will make a formidable and hilarious pair. Vying for Cinderella’s attention, will be Joseph Foyster as the suave Prince Charming with Clark James returning to Godalming Panto, this time as the ever affable and funny Buttons. Laura Kent and Elli Hosier will be joining the cast as Ensemble/Swing.
Cinderella is written by Andrew Pollard, co-directed by Jo Kirkland, co-directed and choreographed by Charlotte Wyschna, cast by Denise Silvey and produced by Nick Wyschna.
To book standard tickets, visit www.GodalmingPanto.com or telephone the Box Office on 01483 361101. There is disabled access throughout the venue. There is a relaxed performance on Sunday 19 December at 6 pm. This show will be specifically adapted for those on the autism spectrum, individuals with sensory and communication disorders, those with learning disabilities and anyone who would benefit from a more relaxed environment. Tickets for this performance have been reduced to £18 and can purchased by calling the Box Office only.
LISTINGS Show: CinderellaDates: 11 – 26 December 2021
Times: Varies – matinee and evening performances; see website or call the Box Office
Running Time: 2 hours (including interval)
Venue address: The Borough Hall, The Burys, Godalming, GU7 1HY
Tickets: £22 standard, £20 concessions (OAPs, under 16’s, unemployed). Prices include booking fees. Children aged 2 and under go free but they must sit on a lap.
Category: Theatre, Pantomimes, family shows, professional theatre
Age guidance: suitable for all ages
Access: There is disabled access throughout the venue. On 19 December at 6pm there will be a relaxed performance specifically adapted for those on the autism spectrum, individuals with sensory and communication disorders, those with learning disabilities and anyone who would benefit from a more relaxed environment. Tickets for this performance can only be purchased by calling the Box Office on 01483 361101.
The Dresser is brought to you by Ronald Harwood and Directed by Terry Johnson. Whilst Air Raids are going off and bombs are being dropped in the year of 1942. Sir (Matthew Kelly) is trying to perform his 227th performance on stage as King Lear, after discharging himself from hospital. Things are not going according to plan as Sir is very vulnerable, having journeys of madness before returning to some form of normality. He finds himself reciting the wrong words of the play he’s meant to be in! He’s becoming very emotional, feeling self-pity towards himself and his health on the other hand is clearly not on his side! If they cancel the play this will be the first time its every happened. Norman (Julian Clary) his dresser of 16 years who has lots of experience of his ways is very devoted towards him, always talking him up to make his presence more magnificent than it really is! He comes across very caring but also bitter at times but proceeds throughout to get him ready as the show must go on! It seems to me that without each other, things wouldn’t take place.
Sir – Matthew Kelly plays his part exceptionally well, a stubbornly ruthless actor that refuses to give in as he has a duty to perform. He offered some extraordinary body language and facial expressions throughout which conveys his characters true and emotional side – just amazing!!
Norman – Julian Clary plays a spectacular part of being the structure in which Sir needs around him to proceed. Hes gentle, calm but also hides a touch of bitterness towards him. He comes across very witty at time and had the audience laughing on many occasions!
The stage was done brilliantly as an old tatty dressing room with a dressing table and big lights surrounding the mirror, costumes hanging up on a rail at the back with different well used wigs on the shelves and a chaise longue. With an ascending piece of the stage revealing the backdrop of the curtains behind the scenes and all that happens whilst the show must go on.
What a fabulous performance with great acting that won’t disappoint, a play which has both comical moments and an element of tragedy.
With Love and Other Acts of Violence currently running at the Donmar Warehouse, Artistic Director Michael Longhurst and Executive Director Henny Finch, today announce the re-release of the company’s first Donmar Local production, Nina Segal’s ASSEMBLY, an innovative digital performance that looks at the climate crisis and how to build a better future. First broadcast live via YouTube from the Donmar Warehouse and locations across the UK during lockdown in March 2021, the recorded digital production will be available on Donmar Warehouse’s YouTube channel from 31 October – 12 November to mark COP26.
Continuing the company’s commitment to exploring the climate emergency, Donmar Associate Zoë Svendsen is acting as Climate Dramaturg and undertaking an 18 month collaborative action research project – Climate Conversations – bringing together artists and producers to reframe the conversation around the climate crisis and the process of making theatre. Whilst the theatre industry must urgently reduce its carbon footprint, the project seeks to bust the myth that sustainability is only about doing or using ‘less’. The project aims to find ways for great art to pursue climate conscious ethics and still flourish. During this project Svendsenwill work with representatives across the Donmar Warehouse’s workforce and productions, running workshops that explore new, climate conscious working practices. She will also host a series of live talks and podcasts, to open up the conversation with audiences. The project culminates with a wider industry sharing of her findings.
Clare Slater, Head of New Work, said today, “We’re delighted to be undertaking this important work with Zoë. At the Donmar, we want to make thrilling and resource-conscious theatre. And we want to do so with care for the people who make it and see it, and for the planet. With Zoe’s significant track record in climate dramaturgy, this research project should help us find change points in the theatre-making process that will help us achieve these goals. We really look forward to sharing what we learn. This is what theatre can do: bring about change by rehearsing it first.
“As part of our commitment to this urgent moment, we’re also proud to re-release our digital production, ASSEMBLY, to coincide with COP26. Nina Segal’s provocative play, made in lockdown with members of our local community, invites you to play your part in this chapter of change.”
Zoë Svendsen also commented,“Climate Conversations takes the climate crisis not just as a ‘topic’, but explores it as the context of everything we do – in theatre and in our lives. Through the project we will be examining what stories we tell, who for and how. How can facing these challenges sharpen our ingenuity and rigour as artists, as we grapple with the most urgent questions of our time. In an era of extreme jeopardy, where the very future of people across the globe is at stake, we will be asking, who are we? How do we need to change for the planet to survive? And who might we become?”
Zoë Svendsen is an associate artist at the Donmar Warehouse and a director, dramaturg and researcher. As artistic director of METIS Zoe creates research-led interdisciplinary performance projects exploring contemporary political subjects, including Love Letters to a Liveable Future (Season for Change/Cambridge Junction), Factory of the Future (Oslo Architecture Triennale), WE KNOW NOT WHAT WE MAY BE (Barbican Pit), World Factory (New Wolsey Theatre/ Young Vic), 3rd Ring Out – TippingPoint Commission Award. As dramaturg she has worked with Shakespeare’s Globe, Young Vic, the National Theatre and the RSC. Svendsen lectures in Drama and Performance at the University of Cambridge.
ASSEMBLY By Nina Segal
The Assembly Company: Rita Barry, Patrick Burrows, David Cunningham, Ubah Egal,Martin Fisher, Angie Lieu, Brian McGinnis, Sadhbha Odufuwa-Bolger, Josiah Phoenix, Pen Riley, Paul Ringo, Stephen Rooney, Jenneba Sie-Jalloh, Youyangg Song, Michael Turney, Victoria Valcheva and Karen Walkden
Director: Joseph Hancock; Video Designer and Director of Photography: Andrzej Goulding
Set and Costume Designer: Frankie Bradshaw; Composer and Sound Designer: Max Pappenheim Lighting Designer: Sam House; System Designer, Programmer and Operator: Dan Trenchard Assistant Director: Eleanor Clack; Producer: Liz Bate
Mixing live performance, animation and sound, ASSEMBLY looks at the impact of humans on nature and what we might build together for a better future. It’s about trying, failing, and trying again. In times of emergency, it is about hope.
This is the first production from the Donmar Local Company – members of the community who live and work in the Donmar’s home boroughs of Camden and Westminster.
ASSEMBLY is dedicated to the memory of Michael Turney, a founding member of our Local Company
Nina Segal (she/her) is a playwright and television writer. Her theatre credits include In the Night Time (Before the Sun Rises) (Gate Theatre), Dismantle This Room (Royal Court Theatre/Bush Theatre), Big Guns (The Yard Theatre), (This Isn’t) A True Story (Almeida Young Company), and Danger Signals (New Ohio, NYC). Her latest play O, Island! was a winner of the 2022 Playwrights’ Scheme Bursary and shortlisted for the 2020 George Devine award.
Joseph Hancock (he/him) previously took part in Donmar on Designand has worked on the Donmar Discover project‘Take the Stage’. He is a director from Dudley, and trained at the Young Vic through the Jerwood Assistant Director programme and with a JMK regional bursary. Directing credits include (This Isn’t) A True Story, Re-Imagining Machinal (Almeida Young Company), Great British Mysteries: 1599?, Great British Mysteries? (Soho/Pleasance), Emily Brown and The Thing and a Squash and a Squeeze (Discover Children’s Centre), Shell and Davey at the Start and the End (VAULT festival), And Yet It Moves (Young Vic). Assistant/Associate credits include If You Kiss Me, Kiss Me (Young Vic), The Hairy Ape, Rise (The Old Vic), It Felt Like A Kiss (Punchdrunk/MIF). He is a Mentor Director on NT Connections and Education Associate at The Old Vic.
Donmar Warehouse thank the following individual, corporate and trust and foundation supporters of Discover, all of whom enabled the Donmar’s work with young people and the local community while the theatre’s doors were closed: Anonymous, Boris Karloff Charitable Foundation, Chapman Charitable Trust, Clore Duffield Foundation, The D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust, The Emmanuel Kaye Foundation, Adam and Victoria Freudenheim, John Lyon’s Charity, Kirkland and Ellis, The Oak Foundation, The Thompson Family Charitable Trust and Universal Consolidated Group.
The Lyceum Theatre, Sheffield – until 30 October 2021.
Reviewed by Sophie Dodworth
Upon entering the auditorium at the Lyceum, you are aware of the buzz created by the excitement of the upcoming performance. Many children are present to see this show, which was originally made for people of that age. However, you also have the adults ready for a good reminisce, that lovely feeling you get when you are catapulted back to your childhood and can almost feel those carefree days…if you are after that, then this is for you. The quintessentially British Bedknobs and Broomsticks will give you a belly full of comfort as it whizzes you back fifty years.
The story is set during World War 2 and follows 3 evacuees Charlie (Conor O’Hara), Carrie and Paul. They are sent to live with Miss Eglantine Price (Dianne Pilkington), who, as it turns out is an apprentice witch. Charlie blackmails Miss Price that if he is to keep her witchcraft a secret, she must give him something, so she takes a bedknob from her late father’s bed and places the “famous magic travelling spell” on it, but only Paul can make the magic happen. They first land in London where they meet Emelius Browne (Sam Lupton) who is a former headmaster of a witchcraft school, Miss Price explains to him that she has a plan to find the magic words for a spell known as ‘Substitutiary Locomotion’, which brings objects to life…
Where to start with the cast?! There are far too many to mention in a short write up. The 2 youngest children and were just perfect, the voice on Paul was just so sweet and well trained, he performed perfectly! He never looked at the audience, he was totally engaged and had his ‘stage face’ on at all times, truly a professional in the making. O’Hara fitted in to playing a much younger role very well, a task that must take some real effort. The voice of Pilkington was beautiful and shone during all of her lead numbers. The comedic talent of Sam Lupton stood out and he gained collective giggles from the crowd more than a few times. But the real undebatable talent of the entire ensemble really made this show, never has there been a more suitable cast! There were some outstanding performances here and without them, there would not be anywhere near as magnetic. Huge credit especially to Susannah Van Den Berg, who was just mesmerising and so committed to her role, and even though only on stage for minimal time compared to the mains, that time was invaluable.
The puppetry section of the show was superb, extra claps to Matthew Elliot-Campbell for taking the stage by storm and grabbing the audience by their collars with his performance as the Lion.
Highlights of the show, without a doubt, was the musical number of Portabello Road, what a number! This was the first time that you really see full use of the entire stage. You get dancing, singing, harmonising, extravagant costumes and a whimsical atmosphere! It truly is a magical number, what a treat!
Maybe the show is slightly too long for the youngest people in the audience at 2.5 hours and maybe there could be a few more big chorus numbers like Portabello Road and The Beautiful Briny Sea, but still, this show is a dreamy, wonderland, wonderful hit.
Mischief and Penn and Teller have come together to from the most hilariously dangerous magic you will ever see!!
We follow Mickey, played by Daniel Anthony, as he hosts a magic fundraiser to honour his late father-death by props! Together with his 6 acts, they will wow and entrance you whilst messing up and defying the odds!
This is a very family friendly show, with heaps of audience participation, especially when you meet Rory Fairborn as ‘Mind Mangler’, where he will have you in stitches whilst also performing some brilliant tricks that will really mangle your mind!! Bär und Spitzmaus, played by Chloe Tannenbaum and Jocelyn Prah were a perfect pairing. A German duo who performed quick changes and cannonball tricks that mostly worked to perfection with a few mistakes-but it still left the audience oohing and ahhing; The whole cast were brilliant. This is a technically demanding piece and it was almost more impressive that the tricks were going wrong and we still couldn’t work out how in some cases!!
A perfect family entertainer, be warned there was a little swearing in the show but it was few and far between. This is ideal for parents and kids, and a wonderfully entertaining spectacle.