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The Scoop free theatre season 2011

Around the World in Eighty Days

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

THIS YEAR, Steam Industry’s 9th annual summer season of free theatre at The Scoop at More London amphitheatre takes place from August 4 to September 4 and includes Around the World in Eighty Days and Bertolt Brecht’s The Mother.

The Scoop at More London, winner of the 2006 Peter Brook Award for ‘up and coming theatre’ and for the innovation of a season of free and accessible theatre, has now firmly established itself as one of London’s unique theatregoing experiences.

Described as a summer treat for all ages, Around the World in Eighty Days is freely adapted from the novel by Jules Verne and the musical by Phil Willmott.

Take a whistle stop tour of four continents with dashing Victorian adventurer Phileas Fogg and his hapless servant Passepartout as they recount their daring attempt to cross the globe in record time!

A wayward balloon, a beautiful princess, a grumpy elephant, a dastardly villain, sacred cows, a wild west outlaw, a Chinese dragon and countless timetable calamities all conspire to help or hinder our heroes.

Around the World in Eighty Days was a Christmas hit at Battersea Arts Centre 10 years ago and has been revived internationally ever since.

In The Mother, translated by controversial British playwright Mark Ravenhill (Shopping and F**king, Some Explicit Polaroids, Mother Clap’s Molly House), Pavel’s mother doesn’t approve of the protests in the street but when her beloved son gets involved in the demonstrations she begins to think again.

The last thing she expects is to find herself marching alongside him, but as she listens to the stories of those around her this meek, respectable woman begins to ask how long she can keep silent.

This surprisingly warm and witty portrait of a family and neighbourhood in crisis is a timeless exploration of what leads ordinary people to stand up for their beliefs. Written during the rise of Hitler, it so worried the Nazis that they kidnapped the leading actor to prevent the public from seeing the play.

Both shows are performed by the same actors and with performances on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sundays at 6pm and 8pm, you can see both each night. There’s no need to book – just turn up and take a seat! Moreover, there’s room for 1,000 people at each performance and refreshments are available on site.

The Scoop at More London, More London Riverside, London, SE1 2DB (on the south bank of the Thames, between London Bridge and Tower Bridge and next to City Hall).

Post Show Talks with the Company about both plays: Sunday, August 7, 14, 21 and 28.

NB: Both shows and the post show discussion will be signed for the deaf
on August 14.