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Park Theatre announces new January to June 2019 season

Season preview

PARK Theatre has announced its new January to June 2019 season. Featuring seven world and four UK/European premieres, thirteen productions include an array of new plays from celebrated writers, new work developed through Park Theatre’s Script Accelerator programme and scripts based on true stories and personal accounts.

Artistic Director Jez Bond says: “With a season that includes British, American, French, Danish and Vietnamese playwrights, I’m excited to announce an eclectic season of predominantly new writing that promises something for everyone.”

LISTINGS for PARK200

The world premiere of Rosenbaum’s Rescue, written by A. Bodin Saphir and directed by Kate Fahy – January 9 to February 9. Age guidance: 14+.

October, 1943. Seven and a half thousand Jews flee Denmark in fishermen’s boats, crossing the water to Sweden and to safety from the occupying Nazi regime. To some, a miracle rescue of biblical proportions. To others, the question remains: how did thousands of Jews slip through the grasp of the most powerful war machine ever assembled?

Hanukkah, 2001. At a remote home on the snowy Danish coast, it’s time for two old friends to bury the hatchet. Lars and Abraham have not seen eye to eye for decades, but old tensions refuse to thaw as Lars’relentless pursuit of the truth concerning the flight of Danish Jews during WWII challenges Abraham’s faith, patience and memories. And when an old secret surfaces and threatens the very foundation of their relationship, fact starts to blur with fiction.

Described as moving and funny, this sharp and intriguing new play unravels the stories of two childhood friends and one of history’s most compelling mysteries.

Gently Down the Stream by Martin Sherman – February 13 to March 16. Age guidance: 14+.

Following a critically acclaimed run at the Public Theater in New York, Gently Down The Stream makes its UK premiere at Park Theatre.

This passionate new play by Olivier and Tony Award nominee Martin Sherman makes its UK debut 40 years after his celebrated modern classic Bent, which subsequently became a major film directed by Olivier and Tony-Award nominee Sean Mathias (No Man’s Land), who directs this production of Gently Down The Stream, marking Martin Sherman’s 80th birthday.

The play follows the remarkably moving and brilliantly funny love story of Beau, a retired American pianist living in London, and Rufus, an eccentric young lawyer. Coming of age during the 70s, Beau’s attitude to love has been seasoned by a life of loving men in a world that initially refused to allow it. Not looking for a long-term relationship, Beau is naturally cautious when Rufus unexpectedly enters his world.

However, while the age gap feels unorthodox to Beau, it is immaterial to Rufus, who is from a new generation of gay men. Rufus has none of Beau’s doubts about the possibility of attaining happiness and love in the 21st Century and as he assimilates himself into Beau’s past and present, Beau learns to embrace Rufus as one of the most defining relationships of his life.

As generations intertwine, Gently Down The Stream reveals the journey of gay history and celebrates the men and women who led the way for equality, marriage and the right to dream.

The world premiere of The Life I Lead, written by James Kettle and directed by Selina Cadell – March 18 to March 30. Age guidance: 12+.

Best remembered for playing Mr Banks in Disney’s classic film Mary Poppins, David Tomlinson was renowned for playing the classic English gent, forthright, proper, and a loveable fool. His meeting with Walt Disney came to encapsulate his incredible life full of adventure and heartbreak.

The man who portrayed one of cinema’s most famous patriarchs was defined by his relationship with his own father – a remote eccentric, who was hiding an extraordinary tragicomic secret.

The Life I Lead sees Miles Jupp, one of Britain’s leading stand-up comedians and revered actors (Mock the Week, The News Quiz, Rev, The Durrells) bring David Tomlinson’s remarkable story to life.

Described as a richly comic and moving tale of fathers and sons across the generations, The Life I Lead fills in the blanks behind a very well-known face.

Intra Muros, written by Alexis Michalik, translated by Pamela Hargreaves and directed by Ché Walker – April 3 to May 4. Age guidance: 16+ (contains strong language and themes of a violent nature).

Now it’s your turn to act…

Ageing thespian Richard is preparing to direct his first theatre class in a maximum security prison, assisted by his former-actress ex-wife Jane and an inexperienced social worker called Alice.

When only two inmates turn up he decides to go ahead with the class nonetheless – and so begins a captivating and darkly comic exploration of life, within the walls.

Written by the multi Molière Award-winning Alexis Michalik (Edmond, Le Porteur d’histoire, Le Cercle des illusionnistes), the critically acclaimed Intra Muros will receive its UK premiere at Park Theatre.

Full of Michalik’s trademark sharp wit and extraordinary method of storytelling, including a live on-stage DJ; this multi-faceted, provocative comedy drama questions our concept of time and its effect on the human spirit.

The world premiere of The Last Temptation of Boris Johnson, written by Jonathan Maitland and directed by Lotte Wakeham – May 9 to June 8. Age guidance: 14+ (contains some bad language).

It was the dinner that changed history: the night in February 2016 when Boris Johnson decided to vote ‘leave’. Guests included fellow MP Michael Gove, media mogul Evgeny Lebedev and, for Boris at least, the spirits of prime ministers past – Margaret Thatcher, Winston Churchill and Tony Blair.

Fast forward to post-Brexit Britain, 2029: a country divided. Boris is back in the political wilderness and has ambitions to make Britain great again, but what are his true intentions?

Navigating a career in politics and the media, Boris remains as divisive as ever and in an unexpected turn of events, soon finds himself mired – yet again – in controversy.

Written by Jonathan Maitland (author of Park Theatre hits Dead Sheep and An Audience With Jimmy Savile), this timely comedy drama offers an insight into the mind of one of the most divisive politicians of our time.

The European premiere of Napoli, Brooklyn, written by Meghan Kennedy and directed by Lisa Blair – June 13 to July 13. Age guidance: 12+.

1960, Brooklyn, New York. The Muscolinos have raised three proud and passionate daughters. Each of them bonded by a fierce love for one another and harbouring a secret longing that could tear the family apart.

When an earth-shattering event rocks their Park Slope neighbourhood, life comes to a screeching halt and the sisters are forced to confront their conflicting visions for the future in what is described as a gripping, provocative and poignant portrait of love in all its danger and beauty.

Napoli, Brooklyn was originally commissioned by The Roundabout Theatre Company and is currently nominated for an Outer Critics’ Circle Award 2019. Meghan Kennedy’s enthralling coming-of-age tale is presented at Park Theatre by the Original Theatre Company (Monogamy, Birdsong, The Habit of Art) and is directed by Lisa Blair whose recent credits include a five star revival of Jerusalem.

For more information or to book tickets, call the box office on 020 7870 6876 or visit www.parktheatre.co.uk/.