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The Shed (NT) - March to April 2014

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

THE NATIONAL Theatre has announced its programme for The Shed for March and April 2014 and it includes three productions – riverrun, Chewing Gum Dreams and HOME.

riverrun runs from March 11 to March 22 (13 performances).

One of Ireland’s leading theatre-makers, Olwen Fouéré performs and directs riverrun, her acclaimed adaptation of the voice of the river in James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake.

A force of constant renewal, the river Life (Liffey/Anna Livia Plurabelle) generates a powerful transformative energy as she dissolves into the great ocean of time.

Fouéré’s unique approach to Joyce’s extraordinary ‘sound-dance’ becomes a universal call to wake up, surrender the past and confront the betrayals that might lie at the heart of our histories.

Following its world premiere at the 2013 Galway Arts Festival, riverrun was performed at the Kilkenny Arts Festival and the Dublin Theatre Festival 2013.

Olwen Fouéré’s recent theatre credits include Maria de Buenos Aires (Cork Opera House), The Rite of Spring/Petrushka with Fabulous Beast Dance Theatre (Sadler’s Wells and Movimento Festival Wolfsburg), Terminus (Abbey Theatre and international tour) and her award-winning performance of Sodome, my love by Laurent Gaudé (Rough Magic/TheEmergencyRoom). Her recent film appearances include This Must Be The Place by Paolo Sorrentino (Palme d’Or selection, Cannes 2011).

A performer who encompasses many art forms, Fouéré was also artistic director of Ireland’s leading avant-garde company Operating Theatre, which she co-founded with composer Roger Doyle.

Produced by TheEmergencyRoom and Galway Arts Festival, riverrun is co-directed by Kellie Hughes, with lighting by Stephen Dodd and costume design by Monica Frawley. The composer and sound designer is Alma Kelliher.

Chewing Gum Dreams runs from March 17 to April 5.

A one-woman play that recalls those last days of innocence before adulthood, Chewing Gum Dreams is written and performed by Michaela Coel, and directed by Nadia Fall.

Tracey Gordon, the 67 bus, friendship, sex, UK garage, school, music, teachers, friendship, periods, emergency contraceptive, arse and tits, friendship, raves, tampons, white boys, God, money, friendship, Aaron, Candice, sex and Connor Jones.

Chewing Gum Dreams was the winner of the 2012 Alfred Fagon Award for the best new play by writers of Caribbean and African descent in the UK.

Michaela Coel is appearing in Blurred Lines in The Shed and previously appeared in Home, for which she will reprise her performance in April. Her other credits include Three Birds at the Bush Theatre and Top Boy for television.

Chewing Gum Dreams was developed at, and is supported by, The Yard Theatre. It plays concurrently with riverrun and HOME at either 9.30pm or 8pm.

After a sell-out run in August 2013, the critically acclaimed HOME returns to The Shed, where it runs from March 26 to April 30.

Homelessness amongst young people in the UK is at a record high, so when the big society doesn’t work, where do you go? An inner city high rise hostel, Target East, offers a roof.

HOME brings to life the unheard voices of the young residents and staff who live and work behind the anonymous concrete walls. Using real testimonials alongside existing and original music, Nadia Fall’s play asks what it really means to call somewhere home.

Created and directed by Nadia Fall, the cast of actors and musicians includes Michaela Coel, Jonathan Coote, Kadiff Kirwan, Ashley McGuire, Grace Savage and Toby Wharton.

HOME is designed by Ruth Sutcliffe, with choreography by Jack Murphy, music by Tom Green and Shakka Philip, musical direction by Gareth Valentine, sound by Mike Walker and lighting by Ciaran Bagnall.

Nadia Fall’s work as a director at the National Theatre includes Hymn and The Doctor’s Dilemma; while her recent work elsewhere includes Disgraced at the Bush Theatre. She is Artistic Director of Naach Theatre Company, where her productions include The Maids (Lyric, Hammersmith and Mac Birmingham); Miss Julie (Oval House Theatre); and a site-specific production of Wild Turkey in Old Street.

NB: Public booking opens on Friday, January 10, 2014.

Tickets: £12/£20 – available from the box office on 020 7452 3000 or online at www.theshed.nationaltheatre.org.uk/.