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Park Theatre (Park90) - July to December 2019

Season preview

PARK90 has six productions lined up in its July to December 2019 season.

The Actor’s Nightmare, written by Christopher Durang and directed by Lydia Parker – July 16 to August 10. Suitable for ages 12+.

Tell me, do you find me funny or do you find me disturbing?

Tony Award-winning playwright Christopher Durang explores the entertainment industry through biting satire and surreal comedy. At once a celebration of show business and a touching reflection on what it means to be an artist, audiences are offered snapshots of the eccentric and absurd.

From Tennessee Williams to Euripides, tossing in a bit of Beckett, no renowned playwright is safe. Classic plays are warped and distorted – the outcome is both shocking and hilarious.

With a female-led creative team and an ensemble cast featuring: Meaghan Martin (Camp Rock), Kate Sumpter (The Little Drummer Girl), and Stefan Menaul (Dirty Dancing, West End), audiences journey through the ludicrous and lonely world of New York theatre, culminating in Durang’s iconic finale: The Actor’s Nightmare.

Especially curated by 3 hearts canvas into a cohesive, stand-alone piece, the production includes the UK Premiere of some of Durang’s finest works: Mrs Sorken; Desire, Desire, Desire; Business Lunch at the Russian Tea Room; Woman Stand-Up; Medea and The Actor’s Nightmare.

St Petersburg Ballet Theatre bring Swan Lake to Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, Dublin, this autumn

Irina Kolesnikova as Odette. Photo by Alexander Gronsky.

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

FOLLOWING two sold-out seasons at the London Coliseum, the internationally acclaimed St Petersburg Ballet Theatre is set to perform at Bord Gáis Energy Theatre this autumn, with their full-length classic production of Swan Lake.

Last year’s run in London was such a success that extra performances were added due to unprecedented demand. The 2019 season is strictly limited and takes place between Tuesday, October 22 and Saturday, October 26.

Arguably the world’s most loved ballet, Swan Lake tells the immortal and classic love story of Prince Siegfried and Odette, a princess turned into a swan by an evil sorcerer’s curse.

St Petersburg Ballet Theatre will perform this balletic masterpiece as it was meant to be seen, boasting gorgeous traditionally painted backdrops, Tchaikovsky’s moving score, a full-sized orchestra and critically acclaimed dancers performing the full-length production for Dublin audiences.

Founded in 1994, St Petersburg Ballet Theatre is renowned globally not just for its beautiful Vaganova trained dancers but also for its stunning full-length productions. Led by prima ballerina Irina Kolesnikova, the company travels internationally, performing classical masterpieces from its repertoire including Giselle, Don Quixote, The Nutcracker and Sleeping Beauty. The incredibly popular Company is in such demand that it gives 200 performances every year.

Irina Kolesnikova has a wealth of leading credits to her name, having been prima ballerina at St Petersburg Ballet Theatre since the age of 21. Following last year’s performances in London, the Sunday Express praised her “stunning classical technique, alone worth the price of the ticket” and declared that she has “the dramatic power of a Maggie Smith or Judy Dench.”

Kolesnikova will also be joined on stage by guest stars from Russia’s leading ballet companies, who will be announced at a later date.

St Petersburg Ballet comes to Dublin following performances in London, Spain, Germany, Belgium, The Netherlands, Ireland, France, Italy, Austria, USA, Brazil, Turkey, South Africa, South Korea, New Zealand, Japan, China, Macau, Singapore, Taiwan and Australia.

As producer of the tour with decades of experience presenting quality Russian ballet around the world, Andrew Guild said:

“We are absolutely thrilled to be bringing Swan Lake to Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, Dublin. Without doubt, Swan Lake is the world’s most famous classical ballet. And no one dances it as beautifully as St Petersburg Ballet Theatre. The full length lavish production shows Russian classical ballet on a grand scale. It’s the real thing. Gorgeous Tchaikovsky music, magnificent sets and costumes, superb Russian classical dancers and brilliant Guest Stars. The Performance will look magnificent on the stage of the Bord Gáis and I urge every ballet lover not to miss it. See it once, remember it forever.”

Tickets for Swan Lake can be purchased at bordgaisenergytheatre.ie/artist/st-petersburg-ballet-theatre-swan-lake.

Teatro Vivo's The Hunters Grimm returns to the streets of Stratford and Catford this May and June

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

TEATRO Vivo is presenting The Hunters Grimm at Stratford Circus Arts Centre from May 30 to June 1 and Catford Broadway from June 6 to June 16, 2019.

In a land where austerity bites the poorest, the powerful fight irrelevant battles and the weather grows wilder, the famous Brothers Grimm search for joyful stories.

And they need your help to see beyond our bleak reality in search of a hopeful story to feed the soul.

Your journey will take you down shadowy streets where you will meet an anarchic frog, comfort a desperate prince, dance with the musicians of Bremen and join a voyage to cure nightmares. Along the way you’ll hear stories of love, death, poverty, longing and sausages.

Critically acclaimed Teatro Vivo has a well-deserved reputation of producing high-quality theatre “where you least expect it.” The company turns everyday environments into magical worlds; having previously staged Shakespeare in supermarkets, Mother Courage in an old weapons factory and The Odyssey on the streets and in the tattoo parlours and pubs of Deptford.

The Hunters Grimm, inspired by the tales of the Brothers Grimm, invites audiences to roam local neighbourhoods and experience familiar streets in new and surprising ways; to find joy in the characters that populate these districts, celebrate the human spirit and forget the chaos of the rest of the world.

For the brave and curious only, The Hunters Grimm will start at each venue before heading on an exploration of streets, back alleys and local businesses. All hunters are requested to wear a stout pair of boots and clothes suited to the climate – for who knows where these stories will take them…

The Hunters Grimm is directed by Sophie Austin. For 15 years, Austin has been the Artistic Director of Teatro Vivo – in 2019 she’ll be stepping down to forge new adventures, and so this will be her last production as head of the organisation. She specialises in large scale, outdoor and site specific work and has worked for Rosa Productions, The Royal Court, the Young Vic, The Roundhouse and The Barbican.

The cast includes Kas Darley, Charlie Folorunsho, Seamore Nelson, Bernadette Russell, Mark Stevenson and Michael Wagg.

Produced by Matthew Woodford, this theatrical adventure for grown-ups inspired by the brothers Grimm is designed by Natalie Jackson.

For more information and to by tickets, visit www.teatrovivo.co.uk/.

Waitress is offering one lucky Londoner a cameo role in the show - for one night only!

Katharine McPhee as Jenna. Photo credit: Johan Persson.

THE next Waitress London Cast Album Karaoke Night has been confirmed for Wednesday, May 8, 2019.

In partnership with WhatsOnStage, audience members who sign up before the show to sing a number from Waitress at the karaoke event will also be auditioning in front of a top West End casting director for the chance to win a cameo role – for one night only – in the musical.

This will be the fourth Waitress London Cast Album Karaoke Night since the show began preview performances in February. Audience members just need to sign up before that evening’s show for the chance to sing one minute of any song from Waitress – live on stage at the Adelphi Theatre – accompanied by the show’s musical director Katharine Woolley.

Waitress tells the story of Jenna, a waitress and expert pie-maker who dreams her way out of a loveless marriage. When a hot new doctor arrives in town, life gets complicated. With the support of her workmates Becky and Dawn, Jenna overcomes the challenges she faces and finds that laughter, love and friendship can provide the perfect recipe for happiness.

Waitress is currently booking at the Adelphi Theatre until October 19, 2019.

Read more about Waitress.

Image: Katharine McPhee as Jenna. Photo credit: Johan Persson.

Pet Shop Boys to premiere new cabaret show at the 2019 Edinburgh Fringe Festival

Frances Barber. Photo by Magnus Hastings.

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

WRITER Jonathan Harvey and Pet Shop Boys Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe will present the world premiere of a new cabaret show at the 2019 Edinburgh Fringe.

Entitled Musik, it’s a 50-minute, one-woman show with what is described as an outrageous book by Jonathan Harvey and six songs by Tennant and Lowe, including four new ones specially written for the show.

It will star multi-award-winning actress Frances Barber reprising her role as Billie Trix from the 2001 musical, Closer to Heaven.

Musik will run from August 5 to August 24, 2019 at Assembly Rooms (Bijou venue).

Pet Shop Boys said: “When we wrote Closer to Heaven almost 20 years ago, we loved the compelling outrageousness of the character Bille Trix as written by Jonathan and performed by Frances Barber. We have all discussed for many years the idea of creating her own one-woman show which would give us the chance to write more songs for her as she looks back on her incredible career. We’re thrilled that this show is finally happening.”

Jonathan Harvey said: “It has been such a treat reconnecting and working with Chris and Neil on this, 20 years after our first foray into musical theatre writing. In Musik Billie, dried up, drug-addled icon and rock star, tells us about her life and sings her biggest hits. I can’t wait to see Frances Barber inhabit her again as she did so hilariously and so touchingly all those years ago.”

Frances Barber is an award-winning star of stage, screen and TV. Her extensive credits include the films Prick Up Your Ears, We Think the World of You, Dead Fish and Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool. Her numerous TV credits include The Street, as Madame Kovaria in multiple episodes of Doctor Who, and Silk. In the West End, she recently played Mrs. Cheveley in An Ideal Husband.

Pet Shop Boys. Photo by Pelle Crépin.

Pet Shop Boys have sold more than 50 million records worldwide and are listed as the most successful duo in UK music history by The Guinness Book of Records. Since 1985, they have achieved 42 Top 30 singles, 22 of them Top 10 hits in the UK Singles Chart, including four UK number ones and at the 2009 Brit Awards, they received an award for Outstanding Contribution to Music. They have also written a score for the classic silent film, Battleship Potemkin, a ballet, The Most Incredible Thing, and performed at the BBC Proms their musical work inspired by Alan Turing, A Man From The Future.

Jonathan Harvey is an acclaimed playwright, novelist and TV writer whose work has earned many awards. His plays include Beautiful Thing, for which he won the prestigious ‘John Whiting Award’ and Babies (National Theatre Studio/Royal Court Theatre), winner of the George Devine Award and Evening Standard’s Most Promising Playwright Award. For television, he wrote the cult comedy series Gimme Gimme Gimme, starring Kathy Burke and James Dreyfus, Murder Most Horrid and is a regular script writer on Coronation Street.

Musik is produced by Cahoots Theatre Company.

Tickets go on sale Thursday, April 18 via www.assemblyfestival.com/.

Images: Frances Barber by Magnus Hastings (top); Pet Shop Boys by Pelle Crépin (bottom).

Assembly Rooms (Bijou venue), 54 George Street, Edinburgh, EH2 2LR

Shakespeare's Globe announces programme for new festival entitled Women & Power

Festival preview

SHAKESPEARE’S Globe has announced the programme for Women & Power, a new festival of events opening on Sunday, May 12, 2019.

With performances, panel discussions, and a scholarly symposium, the festival will celebrate the work and voices of women of all backgrounds and will explore how the work of Shakespeare speaks to the current gender revolution, and how women can use Shakespearean performance to tell their own stories of oppression.

Dr Farah Karim Cooper, Head of Research at Shakespeare’s Globe and curator of the festival, commented:

“We live in a time when it is essential to interrogate the relationship women have to power and leadership in the arts, politics and education. If we ask the question are women in a position to lead? The answer is a resounding yes! If we ask the question, are there enough opportunities for women to lead in these sectors? The answer is, not really. At this festival we intend to ask why, and seek to find ways to obliterate the structures and mindsets that get in the way”.

Opening the festival on Sunday, May 12 will be a celebration of Virginia Woolf’s seminal works, A Room of One’s Own and Three Guineas, both of which will be read in candlelight in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse. A rallying cry to begin the festival, both texts powerfully articulate Woman’s right to intellectual and financial independence.

On Monday, May 13, Professor Clare McManus and Professor Lucy Munro will lead a one-off workshop, Engendering the Stage, in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse. Part of the Globe’s Research in Action series of workshops, in which actors and academics uncover the practices of the Shakespearean stage, this workshop will explore the history of gendered performance on the Renaissance stage and will illuminate the practice of playing with gender on stages across Europe.

Professor Clare McManus works on English and European Renaissance drama at the University of Roehampton, focusing on gender in the writing and performance of Shakespeare and his contemporaries, and Renaissance women’s performance. She is also an editor of Renaissance plays. Professor Lucy Munro is a scholar and teacher of early modern literature at King’s College London. She is interested in presenting old texts to new audiences, and the dynamic relationship between old and new in literary cultures and their afterlives.

A panel event entitled Women & Power: Directing Theatre in the 21st Century will follow on Tuesday, May 14, with panellists including Sarah Frankcom, Artistic Director of the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester, and Globe Associate Artist Athena Stevens. Frankcom and Stevens have both directed plays by Shakespeare or his contemporaries, as well as directing or creating new feminist writing. They will discuss how female directors can shape the future of theatre, interrogate the place for feminism in classical theatre, and expand upon the opportunities and challenges a director’s gender presents.

Sarah Frankcom joined the Royal Exchange Theatre as Literary Manager in 2000, and has been its Artistic Director since 2008. With Royal Exchange Theatre credits including Orpheus Descending, Miss Julie, A View from the Bridge, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf and Kes, Frankcom’s career has also seen her working with the Lyric Hammersmith, the Crucible Theatre, the National Theatre and the Young Vic.

Athena Stevens is an actor, writer, director and spokesperson for the Women’s Equality Party. She is a writer on attachment at the Finborough Theatre and recently wrote a female response to Doctor Faustus for the Dark Night of the Soul festival at Shakespeare’s Globe. She also wrote and starred in Schism at the Park Theatre, and is the Artistic Director of Aegis Productions Ltd in Elephant & Castle.

On Wednesday, May 15, theatre company Clean Break will join not-for-profit Southall Black Sisters as both celebrate 40 years of activism. Clean Break & Southall Black Sisters @ 40: Activism, Women and Power will bring together a selection of speakers from each organisation to discuss how we can either become activists or support activism in the fight for equality and human rights.

Clean Break was set up in 1979 by two women prisoners who believed that theatre could bring hidden stories of imprisoned women to a wider audience. The only women’s theatre company of its kind, Clean Break continues to inspire playwrights and captivate audiences with groundbreaking plays on the theme of women and crime.

Founded in the same year, Southall Black Sisters aims to highlight and challenge all forms of gender-related violence against women, empower them to gain more control over their lives, and live without fear of violence. They are at the forefront of challenging domestic and gender-related violence locally and nationally, and have campaigned for the provision of proper and accountable support services to enable women and their children to escape violent relationships and live in dignity.

Bang Rome: Why Pickup Artists Read Ovid and Why It Matters is on Thursday, May 16. Classicist Donna Zuckerberg will take to the Playhouse to discuss her seminal book Not All Dead White Men: Classics and Misogyny in the Digital Age, an exposé of how today’s alt-right men’s groups are turning disturbingly to ancient sources to promote an ideal vision of masculine life and, in some cases, to justify ignoring women’s boundaries. Donna Zuckerberg received her PhD from Princeton University in 2014 and is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Eidolon, an award-winning online publication for informal Classics scholarship.

At the end of the week (Friday, May 17), Women and Leadership: A Symposium will delve into the myriad challenges women in leadership roles face in politics, the arts, culture and academia. The day will consist of three panel discussions: Women, Culture and Art; Women and Politics; and Women, Education and Academia.

Deep Throat Choir will take to the stage on Saturday, May 18 to close the festival. The all-female singing collective will present an intimate one-off concert celebrating the power of women’s voices. Formed by Luisa Gerstein, composer of the West End transfer of the Globe’s hit production Emilia, the choir are renowned for stripping music-making to the simple components of vocals and percussion.

For more information visit www.shakespearesglobe.com/seasons/women-and-power/.

Production images released of Sweet Charity at the Donmar Warehouse

Adrian Lester

Casting news

PRODUCTION images have been released of Sweet Charity. To view them, click here.

Previously Posted: The Donmar Warehouse has announced initial casting for the role Daddy Brubeck in Josie Rourke’s production of Sweet Charity, which runs at the Donmar Warehouse from Saturday, April 6 to Saturday, June 8, 2019.

Multiple guest actors will play the role of Daddy Brubeck including Shaq Taylor (from April 6 to April 13), Adrian Lester (April 15 to April 27), Le Gateau Chocolat (during the week beginning April 29), Beverley Knight (during the week beginning May 6) and Clive Rowe (during the week beginning May 13) with further casting to be announced.

They will join cast members Lizzy Connolly, Arthur Darvill (as Oscar), Lauren Drew, Anne-Marie Duff (as Charity), Jo Eaton-Kent, Will Haswell, Charlotte Jaconelli, Stephen Kennedy, Debbie Kurup, Martin Marquez, Ryan Reid, Amy Ellen Richardson and Danielle Steers.

Shaq Taylor (Daddy Brubeck/Ensemble) makes his Donmar Warehouse debut in Sweet Charity. His theatre credits include Hadestown (National Theatre), Sweet Charity (Nottingham Playhouse) and Les Misérables (Queen’s Theatre). His film work includes The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.

Adrian Lester OBE (Daddy Brubeck) is an award-winning actor and director. He returns to the Donmar Warehouse following his Olivier Award-winning performance in Company at both the Donmar and in the West End. His career started with a string of successful West End productions including Company, Six Degrees of Separation (Royal Court) and Sweeny Todd (National Theatre), before he took the lead role in Mike Nichol’s film Primary Colors. His other film credits include The Day After Tomorrow, As You Like It, Love’s Labour’s Lost, Grey Lady, Dust, Case 39 and Mary Queen of Scots, directed by Josie Rourke.

Lester is also well known for his TV work including the long running BBC1 series Hustle, Sky Atlantic’s Riviera, US sitcom Girlfriends, Undercover and Trauma. His directing credits include Hustle, Riviera, short film Of Mary and The Greatest Wealth at The Old Vic.

He has played the title roles in Henry V and Othello (National Theatre), for which he won Best Actor at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards; Rosalind in As You Like It (Declan Donnellan/Cheek By Jowl); Ira Aldridge in Red Velvet (Tricycle Theatre/St. Ann’s Warehouse, New York/Garrick Theatre), for which he won Best Actor at the Critics’ Circle Awards; Hamlet in Peter Brook’s The Tragedy Of Hamlet (London, Paris, Japan and New York), Guys & Dolls (Royal Albert Hall) and the recent Cost of Living (Hampstead Theatre).

Le Gateau Chocolat (Daddy Brubeck) makes his Donmar Warehouse debut in Sweet Charity. Theatre credits include Twelfth Night (Shakespeare’s Globe), The Bear and the Proposal, Tobias and the Angel (Young Vic), Threepenny Opera (National Theatre), Porgy and Bess (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Imago (Glyndebourne), Varjak Paw (Royal Opera House), Duckie (Southbank Centre), Black (Soho Theatre/Tour), Le Gateau Chocolat (Menier Chocolate Factory), La Soiree (Roundhouse), Hair (Old Market), Jesus Christ Superstar, La Cage Aux Folles (Theatre Royal Brighton), La Traviata (Barn Theatre) and Peter Pan (Theatre Lighthouse).

His screen credits include Emmerdale, Lewis, K1A, Operatunity and Random Acts (TV) and London Road (film).

Beverley Knight

Beverley Knight (Daddy Brubeck) also makes her Donmar Warehouse debut in Sweet Charity. Theatre credits include Cats (London Palladium), Memphis The Musical (Shaftesbury Theatre), for which she received an Olivier Award Nomination as Best Actress in a Musical, The Bodyguard (Dominion Theatre and Ed Mirvish Theatre, Toronto) and Sylvia (The Old Vic).

Knight has released eight studio albums, and her latest album Soulsville was released in June 2016 and went straight into the UK Top 10. Additionally, she recently took part in Songs from the Stage released in November 2017. She has won three MOBO Awards, been nominated for Best Female at the Brit Awards three times and for the Mercury Music Prize and was awarded an MBE by the Queen in 2007 for services to British music and charity.

Clive Rowe (Daddy Brubeck) returns to the Donmar Warehouse following his roles in Company and Donmar Divas. His numerous theatre credits include In The Willows (UK Tour), Guys and Dolls (Royal Albert Hall), Me and My Girl (Chichester), Jack and the Beanstalk (New Wimbledon Theatre), The Hothouse (Trafalgar Studios), The Ladykillers (West End/UK Tour), Kiss Me Kate (Chichester/Old Vic Theatre), No Naughty Bits (Hampstead Theatre), Twelfth Night, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Trolius & Cressida (Regent’s Park Theatre), Chicago (Adelphi Theatre), and The Light Princess, Carousel, Fuente Ovejuna, Caroline or Change, The Villains Opera, Money, Candide, Peter Pan, Guys and Dolls, Trackers (National Theatre).

Rowe has also returned to The Hackney Empire on numerous occasions to play The Dame in their Christmas pantomime.

Read more about Sweet Charity.

Beats On Pointe - Peacock Theatre

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

BEATS On Pointe, the thrilling dance spectacular from Australia that fuses street dance and ballet, returns to the Peacock Theatre from May 21 to June 16, 2019.

Two opposing dance worlds collide in this exuberant show as a high energy cast of classical ballet and street dancers go toe-to-toe in a glorious mash-up of dance styles.

Dynamic dance combined with music and song, beat-boxing and a touch of comedy brings this dazzling, colourful show back to the Peacock Theatre for a four-week run following its successful week-long Peacock debut in February 2018.

Beats on Pointe is guaranteed to appeal to audiences of all ages including fans of all forms of dance and those who are new to dance shows – it’s all here! The show fairly bursts with light, talent and energy!

Australia’s top dancers expertly bring two distinctive dance genres to the stage: edgy, modern ballet and the athletic thrill of street dance while the soundtrack is second to none – 70s grooves segue seamlessly into contemporary hits to emphasise the action and drive the story.

The show has been thrilling audiences in Australia and is certain to do the same for Londoners and visitors to the capital.

Beats on Pointe is produced by the Australian dance company, Masters of Choreography which was formed by Jennifer and Milo Masters in 2014.

Jennifer Masters, the show’s director, producer, writer and director of choreography said: “Beats on Pointe is a great showcase of not only the talent we have in Australia, but also how diverse and inclusive dance truly is. Our dancers have outdone themselves with this show and the merging of the two styles to integrate in a way that looks good, makes sense and keeps audiences engaged, has been an amazing experience for everyone involved.

“The response to Beats on Pointe has been incredible and it’s a dream come true to be selling out in over seven countries across three continents including heading back to the Peacock Theatre in London – which we love!”

Chief ballet choreographer is dancer and elite gymnast Emma Vaiano; street dance choreography is by Melbourne-based Phill Haddad who has also contributed poetic text, while hip-hop choreography is by New Zealander Alexander Lima.

Performers in Beats On Pointe at the Peacock are: Brodie Chesher, Burak Cagin, Georgia Mae Rutland, Jake Paul Green, Jamane Virdo, Kealy Fouracre, Kelly Hemsley, Lissy Jaye, Natalie Debono, Oriana Siew-Kim, Phillip Egan and Taylor Diamond-Lord.

Tickets: £18 – £45. To book, visit www.sadlerswells.com/.

Times: 7.30pm with matinees on Saturdays at 2.30pm; Sundays at 2pm and Sunday evenings at 6.30pm.

Running Time: 2 hours including interval.

My Beautiful Laundrette - Curve, Leicester and on tour

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

CURVE, Belgrade Theatre Coventry, Everyman Theatre Cheltenham and Leeds Playhouse have announced that they are joining forces to co-produce a new stage production of Hanif Kureishi’s screenplay My Beautiful Laundrette.

The production will open at Curve in Leicester (September 20 to October 5), before touring to Everyman Theatre Cheltenham (October 8 – 12), Leeds Playhouse (October 15 – 26), Belgrade Theatre Coventry (October 29 to November 2) and Birmingham Repertory Theatre (November 5 – 9, 2019).

This bold new production of Hanif Kureishi‘s ground-breaking 1985 Oscar-nominated film of the same name will be directed by Curve’s Artistic Director Nikolai Foster (Memoirs of an Asian Football Casual and Joe Orton’s What the Butler Saw, both at Curve).

Presented against a funky backdrop of 80s music and culture, this drama will explore cultural conflict, gender equality, class and generational strife.

Set in London during the Thatcher years, My Beautiful Laundrette tells the story of young British Pakistani, Omar, who transforms his Uncle’s run-down laundrette into a thriving business. After being confronted by a fascist gang, Omar recognises school-friend Johnny and uses their history to diffuse the situation. As they renovate the laundrette together, love blossoms between them.

This culture clash comedy is also a subversive work of social realism, sprinkled with magic and joy running through the rich veins of Kureishi’s writing.

Speaking about the announcement, Curve’s Chief Executive Chris Stafford and Artistic Director Nikolai Foster said: “We are thrilled to be presenting Hanif Kureshi’s astonishing adaptation of his Oscar-nominated film My Beautiful Laundrette.

“Hanif surfs a multitude of strikingly relevant issues in his 1985 masterpiece – from the journey of the immigrant, English working class society, women’s roles in the family and the results of Thatcher’s policies. Kureishi does all of this with bucketloads of wit, openness, compassion and a sense of mischief at the absurdity of it all.

“We are looking forward to working with Hanif and our partners at Leeds Playhouse, Belgrade Theatre Coventry and Everyman Theatre Cheltenham very much.”

Hamish Glen, Artistic Director of Belgrade Theatre Coventry said: “We’re really pleased to be continuing our ongoing partnership with Curve after the success of our previous co-productions Wipers and Pink Sari Revolution. My Beautiful Laundrette forms part of our ongoing efforts to reach and retain new audiences, and with the support of our co-producers, we hope to strengthen the relationships we have already begun to develop with the Midlands’ diverse communities, particularly as Coventry moves towards its year as UK City of Culture in 2021.”

Everyman Theatre Cheltenham Chief Executive Mark Goucher said: “The 1985 film had a tremendous effect on me. It was radical, moving and very funny. The film launched the career of Daniel Day Lewis and made gay men of any race or class feel empowered and less frightened at a very difficult time. My theatre is delighted to be part of producing this exciting stage adaptation.”

Leeds Playhouse Artistic Director James Brining said: “It’s really exciting to include the first major production of this contemporary classic as part of the first season in the newly refurbished Playhouse. The film broke new ground when it was released but its story still feels like a powerful and important statement about love, community and humanity. We are delighted to be co-producing with some excellent partners and sharing this incredible story with audiences throughout the UK.”

My Beautiful Laundrette will be designed by Grace Smart, with lighting design by Ben Cracknell and sound design by Tom Marshall. Casting director is Kay Magson CDG.

Further details and casting will be announced in due course.

Selladoor Worldwide bring Falsettos to The Other Palace

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

SELLADOOR Worldwide, producers of 9 to 5, Big Fish, American Idiot and Avenue Q, are presenting the European premiere of the multi award-winning musical, Falsettos, at The Other Palace.

With music and lyrics by William Finn and book by William Finn and James Lapine, it runs for a strictly limited season – from August 30 to November 23, 2019.

Casting and creatives will be announced in due course.

David Hutchinson, CEO, Selladoor Worldwide, said: “This is a show we have wanted to bring to London since we embarked on our careers as producers. We’ve been exploring and planning this one for nearly a decade, and I am delighted that today we can tell the world that this beautiful, critically-acclaimed musical – is finally coming to the capital.”

The double Tony Award-winning Falsettos is described as a hilarious and poignant look at a modern family revolving around the life of a gay man Marvin, his wife, his lover, his soon to be bar mitzvahed son, their psychiatrist, and the lesbian neighbours.

Originally created under the spectre of the AIDS crisis, this ground-breaking musical about family dynamics manages to remain buoyant and satirically perceptive even as it moves towards its heartbreaking conclusion.

As writer and composer of Falsettos William Finn received two Tony Awards – Best Book of a Musical (with James Lapine) and Best Original Score. He has also written and composed In Trousers, March of the Falsettos and Falsettoland (Outer Critics’ Circle Award for Best Musical, two Los Angeles Drama Critic’s Awards, two Drama Desk Awards, the Lucille Lortel Award, and Guggenheim Fellowship in Musical Composition). Finn also wrote the lyrics to Graciela Daniele’s Tango Apasionado (music by the great Astor Piazzolla) and, with Michael Starobin, the music to Lapine’s version of The Winter’s Tale.

Finn’s most recent projects include Elegies, A Song Cycle (Lincoln Center) and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, which ran on Broadway and has been produced nationally and internationally, and the musical adaptation of the film Little Miss Sunshine which opened at Second Stage Theatre in October 2013.

James Lapine has written the book for and directed Stephen Sondheim’s Sunday In The Park With George, Into The Woods and Passion, as well as the recent Broadway show, Sondheim On Sondheim. He also directed the first revival of Merrily We Roll Along at LaJolla Playhouse in 1985. With William Finn he has collaborated on March Of The Falsettos and Falsettoland, later presented on Broadway as Falsettos and recently revived in 2016, A New Brain, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee and Little Miss Sunshine. Lapine’s other Broadway credits include The Diary Of Anne Frank, Golden Child and Amour.

Lapine has also written the plays Table Settings, Twelve Dreams, Luck, Pluck & Virtue, The Moment When, Fran’s Bed and Mrs. Miller Does Her Thing. He has been nominated for twelve Tony Awards, winning on three occasions and has received five Drama Desk Awards and the Pulitzer Prize.

Selladoor Worldwide began its life as Sell a Door Theatre Company in 2009, developing rapidly under co-founders David Hutchinson (CEO) and Phillip Rowntree (CFO) into an integral player in the UK and Ireland’s regional theatre landscape. The company has since established itself as a leading producer of mid- and large-scale touring theatre, with an ever-increasing international presence. To find out more about Selladoor, visit www.selladoor.com/.

Tickets: From £19.50. Priority On-Sale – Friday, April 26 2019; General On-Sale – Monday, May 6. Sign up here to be the first to hear about tickets.

Times: Monday to Saturday at 7:30pm and Thursday and Saturday at 2:30pm.

Also at The Other Palace: the London transfer of the critically acclaimed stage adaption of Nigel Slater’s best-selling memoirs Toast (until August 3, 2019).