Live Theatre June to December 2015 Season Announcement

This week Live Theatre announced its June to December 2015 season with an exciting collaboration with National Theatre of Scotland on Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour (Thursday 1 to Saturday 24 October), a new play by Lee Hall (The Pitmen Painters). Adapted from Alan Warner’s novel, The Sopranos and directed by Vicky Featherstone, the play will receive its world premiere at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe before touring Scotland ahead of its English Premiere at Live Theatre in October.

 

Max Robert, Artistic Director, said:

“Live Theatre has enjoyed a long and fruitful creative relationship with Lee Hall so we are delighted to collaborate with National Theatre of Scotland in this co-production of his adaptation of Alan Warner’s brilliant novel, The Sopranos. I’m sure our audiences will be thrilled to see Lee’s latest work and will extend a warm Tyneside welcome to the company for the play’s English Premiere.”

 

After its short sell-out run in April 2015 Day of the Flymo by Journal Culture award-winning playwright Paddy Campbell will be returning to Live Theatre (Thursday 12 to Saturday 21 November).  Awarded 4 stars by The Guardian audiences will have the chance to meet a brother and sister as they come into contact with the care system.

Paul James, Associate Director of Education & Participation and director of Day of the Flymo said:

 

I am delighted that Day of the Flymo is returning to Live Theatre. The piece is funny, moving and smacks of authenticity as it reflects Paddy Campbell’s real-life experience of working with young people caught up in the care system. Don’t miss the opportunity to see this original and compelling play by a hugely talented writer.”

 

Writer Paddy Campbell added:

“I’m thrilled that Day of the Flymo is being brought back for another run in November. The audience response was terrific in April and it’s great that more people are going to get the chance to see it. I feel incredibly lucky to have had such a great cast for this play and I know they are raring to get back in the theatre again. I can’t wait.”

Young people from Live’s Youth Theatre will be taking over the building for two weeks in August for the company’s sixteenth annual Youth Theatre Festival called Our World where they will create four evenings of unique entertainment; Big Talk, Small Talk (Thursday 6 August) is a selection of short pieces devised over ten days; 11 Plus (Friday 7 & Saturday 8 August) gives young people’s perspective on what it’s like to be 11 and 12 today; Your Aunt Fanny (Friday 7 & Saturday 8 August) test out some new comedy sketches before they head up to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe for the first time, and Invisible Cinema(Sunday 9 August) a film made using improv acting by six young actors working with Magic If films.

 

Live Lab offers theatre-goers the opportunity to see exciting new work performed for the very first time. This season Red is the New Blue (Tuesday 23 & Wednesday 24 June) is a new collaborative project with three Live Lab Associate Artists, there are twoTen Minutes to… events (Sunday 7 June and Sunday 1 November), a Scratch Night (Thursday 19 November) as well as seasonal festivities in Live Lab Christmas Adventures (Monday 21 December).

 

Ahead of the launch of the new Children & Young People’s Writing Centre next year, created as part of Live Works, Live Theatre is starting a new programme of theatre especially for schools. What the Thunder Said (Wednesday 17 to Friday 19 June) will explore 9 to 11 year olds’ responses to witnessing violence and bullying and The Forest (Thursday 15 & Friday 16 October) is a multi-sensory tale especially for teenagers and young adults with profound and multiple learning disabilities.

 

Turning Pages (Thursday 3 to Saturday 5 December), presented as part of Write Stuff, Live Theatre’s playwriting initiative for secondary schools, will feature six plays written by 13 to 15 year olds from Furrowfield School in Gateshead and Redhouse Academy in Sunderland.

 

To help launch its new public gardens Live Theatre is calling out for proposals for Fun Palaces (Saturday 3 & Sunday 4 October), a free nationwide celebration of arts, culture and sciences.

The quayside based Theatre is also looking forward to welcoming some of the country’s most exciting visiting theatre companies.No More Worries (Thursday 18 June) is a combination of theatre and spoken word from Simon Mole.  Two Mixtape events (Friday 24 July & Friday 30 October) will offer hilarious bite-sized theatre inspired by music.  Key Change (Friday 11 & Saturday 12 September) presented by Open Clasp Theatre Company and devised with women from HMP/YOI Low Newton Prison will return to Live Theatre.  Grandad and the Machine (Wednesday 16 September) is an epic quest in a fairytale for grown-ups andThe Bogus Woman (Saturday 7 November) is the tale of an African woman seeking safety and asylum as she arrives in a strange country.

 

Live Theatre will also host live music from Jumpin’ Hot Club, a special gig launching Refugee Week featuring Stella Chiweshe and The Crossing Band (Sunday 14 June) and a monthly night of alternative comedy from Silly Billies Comedy Club (Sunday 27 September, 25 October, 29 November & 20 December)

For more information about Live Theatre’s June to December 2015 season or to book tickets visit www.live.org.uk or contact the box office on (0191) 232 1232.

Whitney, Queen of the Night

This fantastic show celebrates one of the greatest singing talents of our time – Whitney Houston, at Darlington Civic Theatre on Thursday 4 June.

This award-winning production features a stellar line-up with rising West End star Rebecca Freckleton delivering a powerhouse and breath-taking performance as Whitney.

Taking us on a magical rollercoaster ride through three decades of classic hits that include I Wanna Dance With Somebody, One Moment in Time, I’m Every Woman, My Love is Your Love, So Emotional Baby and many more, this show beautifully remembers the most highly awarded female in the world ever!

Whitney’s one true legacy was her music which touched most of us at some time in our lives. Share her life and get ready for the greatest love of all in Queen of The Night.

Whitney – Queen of the Night is at Darlington Civic Theatre on Thursday 4 June. Tickets* are priced £20 and £22.

To book contact the Box Office on 01325 486 555 or visit www.darlingtoncivic.co.uk

*All ticket prices include a £1 restoration levy

Casting announced for 1984 West End run

Sonia Friedman Productions and Eleanor Lloyd Productions
present the Headlong, Nottingham Playhouse and Almeida Theatre production of
1984
By George Orwell
A new adaptation created by Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan

Casting announced for West End run

Matthew Spencer will play the role of George Orwell’s Winston Smith in the hit West End stage production of 1984 this summer.  Julia will be played by Janine Harouni until 25 July, and then Hara Yannas from 27 July to the end of the run. Simon Coates, Tim Dutton, Stephen Fewell, Christopher Patrick Nolan, Ben Porter, Gavin Spokes and Mandi Symonds complete the cast.

Full cast (in order):
Simon Coates – Parsons (From 29th June)
Tim Dutton – O’Brien
Stephen Fewell – Charrington
Janine Harouni – Julia (Until 25th July)
Christopher Patrick Nolan – Martin
Ben Porter – Syme
Matthew Spencer – Winston
Gavin Spokes – Parsons (Until 27th June)
Mandi Symonds – Mrs Parsons
Hara Yannas – Julia (From 27th July)

All the cast members are returning to the show, having previously appeared in the touring, Almeida or West End productions. Matthew Spencer played Syme in 2014, as well as understudying Winston Smith. All the other cast members are resuming roles they have played before.

The Headlong, Nottingham Playhouse and Almeida Theatre production of 1984returns to the Playhouse Theatre this summer, where it enjoyed a run in 2014. 1984 will preview from 12 June 2015, with the press night on 18 June 2015.

The production premiered at Nottingham Playhouse in September 2013. In total, it has played to more than 234,000 people in Nottingham, at the Almeida Theatre, in the West End, and on two UK tours.

101 seats for every performance for £19.84.

April, 1984. Comrade 6079, Winston Smith, thinks a thought and starts a diary. But  is always watching, and the door to Room     can swing open in the blink of an eye.

The definitive book of the 20th century in a radical, award-winning adaptation exploring surveillance, identity and why Orwell’s vision of the future is relevant .

1984 is adapted and directed by Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan, set and costume designed by Chloe Lamford, with lighting designed by Natasha Chivers, sound designed by Tom Gibbons and video designed by Tim Reid.

George Orwell’s 1984, published in 1949, is one of the most influential novels in recent history, with its chilling depiction of perpetual , government and incessant public. Its ideas have become our ideas, and Orwell’s fiction is often said to be our reality.

 

FULL CASTING ANNOUNCED FOR RSC’S PRODUCTION OF JONSON’S VOLPONE

VOLPONE
By Ben Jonson
Directed by Trevor Nunn
Swan Theatre:
3 July – 12 September 2015
Press night: Thursday 9 July, 7pm

Full casting is announced for the Swan Theatre production of Ben Jonson’s great satirical comedy Volpone. Returning to the theatre he created former RSC Artistic Director Trevor Nunn directs with Henry Goodmanin the title role, opening on Thursday 9 July 2015.

Henry Goodman returns to the RSC having last been with the company in 2003 with Richard III. He last collaborated with Trevor Nunn on the award-winning productions of The Merchant of Venice and Summerfolkat the National Theatre in 1999.  His recent theatre credits include Yes Prime Minister (Chichester/West End); The Holy Rosenbergs (National Theatre) and as the eponymous Arturo Ui in The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (Chichester/West End). Joining him in this contemporary production of Jonson’s money obsessed society is Orion Lee as Volpone’s servant Mosca. Orion’s numerous credits include the films x+y, Skyfalland Fury and in the theatre his credits include Enron (Chichester, Royal Court, West End) and Wild Swans(Young Vic). Orion is currently a series regular on Sky TV’s Critical.

The full cast includes: Andy Apollo (Bonario); Sheila Atim (Assistant to Lady Politic Would-Be); Ankur Bahl(Androgyno); Guy Burgess (Judge/Merchant); Geoffrey Freshwater (Corbaccio); Henry Goodman(Volpone); Marcus Griffiths (Commandatori); Rhiannon Handy (Celia); Simon Hedger (Judge); Julian Hoult (Castrone); Matthew Kelly (Corvino); Jonathan Key (Nano); Orion Lee (Mosca); Annette McLaughlin (Lady Politic Would-Be); Steven Pacey (Sir Politic Would-Be); Miles Richardson (Voltore);Richard Rees (Judge); Colin Ryan (Peregrine); Nav Sidhu (Notary) and Gabby Wong (Assistant to Lady Politic Would-Be).

Volpone is designed by Stephen Brimson Lewis with lighting by Tim Mitchell. The music is composed bySteven Edis with sound by Fergus O’Hare. Movement is by Lynne Page, the Fight Director is Terry Kingand Video by Nina Dunn.

To book tickets call 0844 800 1110 or online at www.rsc.org.uk

The RSC Ensemble is generously supported by THE GATSBY CHARITABLE FOUNDATION and THE KOVNER FOUNDATION

BP £5 tickets and BP Shakespeare Pass for 16-25s
The BP £5 tickets and BP Shakespeare Pass for 16 – 25 year olds gives access to £5 tickets for all RSC productions whether we are performing in Stratford-upon-Avon, London or on tour. The pass enables 16-25 year olds to see five shows in Stratford-upon-Avon for £20 – the cheapest way to enjoy shows at the RSC. Tickets can be booked in advance on the phone, online or in person with some available for sale on the day of the performance.  The scheme is supported by Project Partner, BP.

 

Production Access Information: www.rsc.org.uk/visit-us/access.aspx
Volpone
Thursday 27 August, 7.30pm & Saturday 12 September, 1.30pm – Captioned Performances
Friday 14 August, 7.30pm & Saturday 5 September, 1.30pm – Audio described performances

 

 

BUSH THEATRE HOSTS MIDNIGHT RUN IN FOUR-VENUE TENTH ANNIVERSARY EVENT

97e7bea66799bac3_800x800arOn 18 July 2015, The Bush Theatre will join forces with the Almeida Theatre, the Albany, and the Roundhouse for four synchronised Midnight Run events supported by UNESCO.

The Bush Theatre will be host to one of four individual groups of ‘midnight runners’ as they begin on an artistic walking adventure through London from 6pm til 6am.

The Midnight Run, founded by award winning poet Inua Ellams, is a walking, arts-filled, night-time cultural journey through a city. It gathers strangers and local artists to explore, play and create whilst the city sleeps. After 10 years, 600 “midnight runners”, 130 contributing artists, 7 cities and 4 countries, the unique experiential project has quietly grown into a grassroots international movement.

In addition to the London event this summer, the Midnight Run will embark on a European Tour with events featuring in Rome, Madrid, Berlin and Paris from May to September. UNESCO will support all events naming the Midnight Run an official event partner for its International Year of Light.

“The Midnight Run grew from an instinctive response to the ever-growing cultural melting pot urban environments have become. We wanted to make arts accessible and build communities. We’ve accomplished a lot in 10 years and this year’s celebration is to mark those achievements and build for the future. Expect the unexpected and join us!” – Inua Ellams, Founder of the Midnight Run.

Tickets will go on sale to Bush Local members today, and on general sale on 22 May 2015.

Video at https://vimeo.com/125821423

 

Shubbak Festival (11-26 July) THEATRE PROGRAMME

SHUBBAK

11-26 July 2015

 

‘A Window on Contemporary Arab Culture’

 

THEATRE PROGRAMME

 

Shubbak (meaning ‘window’ in Arabic) is London’s largest biennial festival of contemporary Arab culture.  For its third festival, which runs from the 11-26 July, Shubbak presents its most ambitious programme yet, with UK premieres and new commissions from artists across the Arab world. This year’s festival will present a truly varied programme designed to appeal to London’s population in all its diversity.

Shubbak presents a theatre programme at Rich Mix, the Cockpit Theatre, Bush Theatre, Arcola Theatre and the Young Vic.

D-SISYPHE

RICH MIX

18 AND 19 JULY, 7.30PM

At Rich Mix, award-winning Tunisian actor and director Meher Awachri performs the UK premiere of D-Sisyphe, a night in the life of Khmais, a Tunisian construction worker in the midst of an existential crisis. Based on story of Sisyphus, this monologue (in Arabic with English subtitles) with contemporary dance and physical theatre, confronts topics of religion, revolution and individual will.

Listings:

D-Sisyphe

Address: Rich Mix, 35-47 Bethnal Green Road, E1 6LA

Date/time:  18 and 19 July 2015, 7.30pm

Tickets: £10

Post-show Talk: with Meher Awachri 18 July

Booking: 020 7613 7498/ www.shubbak.co.uk/d-sisyphe

 

London has a rich sector of Arab theatre makers creating new work. Shubbak highlights four examples of Arab theatre making in London:

 

THE TREE CLIMBER

COCKPIT THEATRE

14-18 JULY, 7.30PM, MATINEES 16 and 18 JULY, 3.30PM

At the Cockpit Theatre London-based El-Alfy Theatre Company presents The Tree Climber by Tawfik Al Hakeem, Egypt’s most renowned playwright of the 20th century.

Bahadir Effendi, a retired train inspector, finds himself in a whirlpool of problems when his wife, Behana disappears. The subsequent plot includes a detective, a lizard, a time-travelling dervish, and a magic tree, who all contribute to turn the quiet life of a married couple upside down. The Tree Climber is a fast-paced farce and a major work of absurdist theatre in Egypt. Adapted by Perdita Stott and directed by Ahmed El-Alfy.

Listings:

The Tree Climber

Address: Cockpit Theatre, Gateforth Street, NW8 8EH

Date/time:  14- 18 July 2015, 7.30pm, Matinees 16 and 18 July, 3.30pm.

Tickets: £22 (£15 concessions)

Booking: 020 7258 2925/ http://www.shubbak.co.uk/the-tree-climber

 

 

NAHDA

BUSH THEATRE

15-18 JULY, 7PM, MATINEES 15 and 18, 2PM

Sevan K. Greene’s Nahda (Awakening) is a collection of four short plays at the Bush Theatre telling stories of the confusion of second generation children of refugees, the conflicted fate of Arab Muslim soldiers, the West’s fascination with consumerism, and five generations of women using Facebook for political agency. Sevan K. Greene asks how personal freedom and identity can be conquered under the pressure of conflicting forces.

 

Listings:

Nahda

Address: Bush Theatre, 7 Uxbridge Road, W12 8LJ

Date/time:  15- 18 July 2015, 7pm, Matinees 15 and 18, 2pm.

Tickets: £12

Booking: 020 8743 5050/ http://www.shubbak.co.uk/nahda

 

 

LOVE, BOMBS AND APPLES

ARCOLA THEATRE
21-25 JULY, 8PM, MATINEE 25 JULY, 3.30PM

Love, Bombs & Apples at the Arcola Theatre is four comic tales of four men from different parts of the globe experiencing a moment of revelation. Written by Hassan Abdulrazzak (Baghdad Wedding), performed by Asif Khan, directed by Rosamunde Hutt,  designed by Mila Sanders with music by James Hesford.“Exhilarating…The dialogue is quick, sardonic, full of character” – The Observer on Baghdad Wedding. Presented by AIK productions.

 

Listings:

Love, Bombs & Apples

Address: Arcola Theatre, 24 Ashwin Street, E8 3DL

Date/time:  21-25 July 2015, 8pm, Matinee 25 July, 3.30pm.

Tickets: £13-17

Booking: 020 7503 1646/ www.shubbak.co.uk/love-bombs-apples

 

 

NOW IS THE TIME TO SAY NOTHING

YOUNG VIC

14-18 July, 2PM, 4PM, 7PM AND 9PM DAILY

 

Now Is The Time To Say Nothing at the Young Vic explores the ongoing conflict in Syria through the eyes of young Londoners collaborating with young Syrian filmmaker Reem Karssli. Featuring moving video and a stunning soundscape, this powerful and immersive Young Vic Taking Part production plays for a limited run for Shubbak.

 

Listings:

Now is The Time to Say Nothing

Address: Young Vic, 66 The Cut, SE1 8LZ

Date/time: 14-18 July 2015, 2pm, 4pm, 7pm, 9pm

Tickets: Free

Booking: 020 7922 2922/ www.shubbak.co.uk/now-is-the-time-to-say-nothing

 

Website: www.shubbak.co.uk

Twitter: @shubbakfestival

Facebook: /shubbakfestival

McQueen

Stephen Wight as Lee in McQueen credit SpecularMcQueen is a new play by James Philips which steps into the fairy story landscape of Lee Alexander McQueen’s mind. It stars Stephen Wight as Lee McQueen, Dianna Agron as Dahlia and Tracy-Ann Oberman as Isabella Blow.Tracy-Ann Oberman as Isabella Blow in McQueen credit Specular (4)

McQUEEN is a journey into the visionary imagination and dark dream world of Alexander McQueen, fashion’s greatest contemporary artist.  Set on a single London night, it is more than a bio-play. It is stepping into the fairy story landscape of McQueen’s mind, the landscape seen in his immortal shows, where with a dress an urchin can become an Amazon, where beauty might just help us survive the night.  A girl has watched McQueen‘s Mayfair house for eleven consecutive days. Tonight she climbs down from her watching tree and breaks into his house, to steal a dress, to become someone special. He catches her, but, instead of calling the police, they embark together on a journey through London and into his heart.Laura Rees as Arabella in McQueen credit Specular

Dianna Agron as Dahlia in McQueen credit Specular (3)McQUEEN will be directed by John Caird, with production design by David Farley, choreography by Christopher Marney, video design by Tim Bird, lighting design by David Howe, sound design by John Leonard, wigs designed by Linda McKnight, fight direction by Kate Walters and casting by Jayne Collins CDG & Kate Plantin CDG.

McQUEEN will be produced at St. James Theatre by Robert Mackintosh, AMIR Ltd, Hilary Williams, Deborah Negri, with Julian Stoneman as executive producer, for and on behalf of McQ Productions Ltd.

LISTINGS INFORMATION

12 May to 27 June 2015

St. James Theatre

12 Palace Street

London SW1E 5JA

Performances: Monday to Saturday at 7.30pm*, Thursdays and Saturdays at 2.30pm**

*7.00pm on Tuesday 19 and Wednesday 20 May

**No 2.30pm performances on Thursday 14 and Thursday 21 May

Ticket Prices: £25, £35, £55, £65

Box Office: 0844 264 2140

Website: www.mcqueentheplay.com

Facebook: facebook.com/McQueenThePlay

Twitter: @McQueenThePlay

Calamity Jane Review

Civic Theatre, Darlington – 12 May 2015

Calamity Jane whip crack aways into Darlington this week.

On the face of it, Calamity Jane shouldn’t be a heroine.  ‘Careless with the Truth’ and a stranger to a bar of soap, she is petulant, has tantrums, is obsessive and has jealous rages and is played perfectly by Jodie Prenger.

For those who don’t know the story of Martha Jane Cannary, she WIld Bill Hickok were real 19th Century Wild West characters.

The film of Calamity Jane was released in 1953 and the first stage production in the 1960s. This well-known story has been doing the rounds since.

With fine dance routines coupled with Fain and Webster’s great songs such as ‘Deadwood Stage’, ‘The Black Hills of Dakota’, ‘Windy City’ and Oscar winning ‘Secret Love’, musical theatre fans should be in seventh heaven here.

There were no scene changes, just great utilization of the available space and multi-functioning props. Turning a piano into a stagecoach in five seconds flat – most ingenious

Tom Lister shakes off his soap persona and gives an outstanding performance as WIld Bill Hickok.  His two jaw dropping moments are his beautiful solo guitar rendition of ‘Higher than a Hawk’ and when Bill loses a bet and dresses as Queen Victoria

The story is driven by mistaken identity and Calamity’s obsession and jealousy.  Mistake number one is when actor Francis Flyer (the very versatile and talented Bobby Delaney) turns up to perform in Deadwood when the townsfolk are expecting Frances the actress.  Calamity then gets obsessive and jealous of Danny Gilmartin’s (Alex Hammond) adoration of actress Adelaide Adams.  Desperate to impress Calamity goes to Chicago to bring back Adelaide to perform.  Mistake number two is when Adelaide’s dresser Katie Brown (talented Phoebe Street) pretends to be Adelaide and returns to Deadwood to perform in the town.

And so begins a romance, with Bill liking Katie, Calamity liking Danny and Danny and Katie liking each other.  Calamity’s obsessive jealousy and temper drives Katie out of town but Calamity saves the day and a happy ending ensues

There were a few niggles in Darlington, the surprisingly small cast are all multi-talented, singing, dancing and acting and playing the musical instruments. But the musical talent over-shaddowed the singing in the first half but this was rectified in the second.  And Prenger’s American accent travelled as widely as the Deadwood Stage, and at some points if felt like we were watching a one tribute to Hylda Baker instead of Doris Day

But the sold out audience in Darlington, loved the show, clapping and singing along and giving a standing ovation at the end

HEARTWRENCHING WARTIME TALE MAKES NEWCASTLE DEBUT

The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, a world stage premiere of the bestselling novel by John Boyne, is set to make its Newcastle debut at the Theatre Royal in May.  Be prepared to be stirred, stunned and heartbroken 19-23 May 2015.

 

The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas is an emotive tale of an unlikely friendship between two innocent boys. Set during World War II, the story is seen through the eyes of Bruno, the eight-year-old son of the commandant at a concentration camp, whose forbidden friendship with a Jewish boy on the other side of the camp fence has startling and devastating consequences.

 

John Boyne’s 2006 novel has sold millions of copies around the world and has appeared on many bestseller lists including the New York Times where it reached number one. It was made into a Miramax feature film which was released in 2008.

 

This play is produced by The Children’s Touring Partnership, which is led by independent producer Fiery Angel and a consortium of major regional theatres. The Partnership has previously toured hit shows Goodnight Mister Tom (which won the Olivier Award for Best Entertainment and Family) and Swallows and Amazons.

 

Marianne’s Oldham plays Mother. Marianne recently appeared in The Musketeers for BBC One; Foyle’s War for ITV1 and was a lead regular role in The Crimson Field for BBC One. Her most recent film credit is Absolutely Anything, directed by Terry Jones and starring alongside Kate Beckinsale.

 

Phil Cheadle stars as Father.  Phil has extensive stage credits, including a local appearance in Blue Remembered Hills at Northern Stage.  His TV credits include Crimson Fields; New Worlds; Silent Witness and Inspector Lynley to name but a few, and he has appeared in films John Carter; Comes A Bright Day and To The Sea.

 

The role of Bruno during the Newcastle Theatre Royal run will be played by Jabez Cheeseman, and Colby Mulgrew will play Shmuel, both 9 years old.

 

Edward Snape for the Children’s Touring Partnership commented, ‘The Children’s Touring Partnership aims to produce and tour innovative, ambitious and engaging large scale theatrical productions for children and families. After two years of development we are very excited by this new commission which will bring this extraordinary story to life on stage for the first time’.

 

As the book is a Key Stage 3 level school text for 11 – 14 year olds, there will be an extensive education programme attached to this production and an additional matinee performance to accommodate school parties.

 

Born in Dublin, John Boyne has published nine novels for adults, including his most recent, A History of Loneliness (2014).  As well as The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas,  John has written three other novels for younger readers: Noah Barleywater Runs Away (2010), The Terrible Thing That Happened to Barnaby Brocket (2012) and Stay Where You Are And Then Leave (2013).

 

The production has been adapted for the stage by Angus Jackson, Associate Director of Chichester Festival Theatre. His Chichester credits include Neville’s Island (now playing in the West End) and King Lear (also New York), The Browning Version (also West End), Goodnight Mr Tom (also national tour), and Bingo (also Young Vic). For the National Theatre he directed Rocket to the Moon, The Power of Yes, Fix Up and Elmina’s Kitchen (also tour and West End). His film of Elmina’s Kitchen won him a BAFTA Best New Director nomination.

 

The director is Joe Murphy, the Artistic Director of nabokov, a new writing company which is dedicated to making work in response to immediately relevant social and political themes.  Joe’s 2010 production Bunny won the Scotsman Fringe First Award following its premiere in Edinburgh and went on to tour the UK.

 

Design is by Robert Innes Hopkins, who renews his collaboration with Angus Jackson following several hit productions at Chichester Festival Theatre, and Lighting design is by Malcolm Rippeth, an Associate Artist of Kneehigh where his credits includeBrief Encounter, which was a sell-out success at Newcastle Theatre Royal in 2009.

 

The composer is Stephen Warbeck whose credits include the film Shakespeare in Love for which he won an Academy Award.

 

www.theboyinthestripedpyjamas.com

 

The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas appears at Newcastle Theatre Royal from Tue 19 – Sat 23 May 2015 (Evenings at 7pm, Matinees on Wed, Thu, Sat 2pm). Recommended age 11+ Tickets are from £13.50 (Save 50p per ticket by booking online) and can be purchased from the Theatre Royal Box Office on 08448 11 21 21 or select your own seat and book online atwww.theatreroyal.co.uk

Q&A with MICHAEL NUNN and WILLIAM TREVITT of BALLETBOYZ

theTALENT2015 tour

a)      Tell us how you met Alexander Whitley and what you like about The Murmuring:

William Trevitt: We knew Alex as a dancer initially but noticed that he had begun choreographing and was creating more and more performances. We asked him to come in and spend a day in the studio with our dancers, just to see what might happen and to get an idea of his creative process. Everyone got on very well and his ideas really interested us and so we asked him to make a piece of dance for the company. The Murmuring is a finely crafted work with fascinating details and wonderful opportunities for the dancers to push themselves. It involves the company becoming a single entity and moving as one organism which is perfect for our group of dancers.

 

b)      And how you and Christopher Wheeldon have re-worked Mesmerics for the company:

Michael Nunn: Mesmerics was originally created for one woman and two men and has been through several reinventions before this one, but this version is the first time it has been danced by an all male cast. Much of the choreography has remained intact, but there are some sequences that didn’t make sense for the men to dance; sequences that only worked when danced by a woman in pointe shoes for example. Chris allowed the dancers to develop their own solutions to these problems and then he developed their ideas to create the version you will see theTALENT performing.

 

d)      Tell us about some of the theatres you’ll be visiting.

Michael Nunn: We have some great venues on this tour including some old favourites like the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham and the Swan Theatre in High Wycombe, along with some theatres which are newer to us. The Mercury in Colchester was so much fun last year that we’re delighted to be going back for three nights and the Civic Theatre in Darlington had such an enthusiastic audience, we can’t wait to visit again! We’re hitting Blackpool in May which is new to BalletBoyz (even though Billly and I performed there with The Royal Ballet nearly 20 years ago!) along with polygonal venues the Reading Hexagon and Yeovil Octagon and our first visit to the Theatre Royal, Brighton. 

 

f)       What do you like about touring and BalletBoyz audiences?

William Trevitt: Everywhere we go we find that the audiences we play to respond in very different ways, sometimes quiet and attentive, sometimes boisterous and fun, but it is always good to find that we have people in the audience who are seeing dance for the very first time with us. We seem to gather new fans wherever we go, people are still really in awe of what these dancers can achieve and they love the way they perform and the variety of the work in our shows. 

 

h)      What’s a typical audience member for a BalletBoyz show?

Michael Nunn: There is no typical audience member for us. They are older and younger, women and men (who are not just there because they’ve been dragged there!). They range from dance lovers who might go and see every dance show there is to people trying dance for the first time and of course we love the idea of our show being the introduction to dance for so many people.

 

i)       After the spring tour, what are the next moves for BalletBoyz?

William Trevitt: We are working on a new production for 2016 as well as planning a film version and a tour of our full length work Young Men. Our last repertoire of Serpent and Fallen will be on BBC Four later in the year, direct from the Roundhouse in London and Sky Arts are scheduled to show our “Kama Sutra the Ballet” in the summer. Busy busy busy!

 BalletBoyz perform at Darlington Civic Theatre on Tuesday 26 May. Tickets* are priced £21, £19 and for under 16s £11

To book contact the Box Office on 01325 486 555 or visit www.darlingtoncivic.co.uk *All ticket prices include a £1 restoration levy