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Bristol Old Vic’s A Christmas Carol to return for 2019!

A Christmas Carol
A Christmas Carol

A Christmas Carol

Bristol Old Vic today announced the return of its sell-out production A Christmas Carol for 2019. Told in true Bristolian style, this year’s production of A Christmas Carol, directed by Lee Lyford (The Snow Queen), adapted by Tom Morris (Swallows & Amazons, The Grinning Man) with music by Gwyneth Herbert (The Snow Queen), has been enchanting audiences of every age.

Alongside becoming the theatre’s fastest-selling Christmas show, the production’s combination of innovative, playful staging and real heart, alongside a poignant message about the times we live in, has received a rapturous response from audiences and critics alike, being called “quite fantastical” by The Times, with “theatrical magic in all the right places” (Bristol 24/7) and given the full ‘five stars’ by Bristol Post (“heart-warming, magical”), 365 Bristol (“perfect for all ages”) and Reviewsgate (“an absolute corker”).

Standing room tickets have now been released for the rest of December and tickets for new year performances are quickly being snapped up as the perfect antidote to the January blues.

If you haven’t been lucky enough to grab a ticket this year, the 2019 returning production will go on sale to Priority Bookers from this Thu 13 Dec (Artists’ Circle) and Fri 14 Dec (Friends & Best Friends), with tickets on sale to the general public from Fri 21 Dec.

Bristol Old Vic’s Executive Producer, Chloe Naldrett Elwood said: “We have been simply overwhelmed by the response to Lee Lyford’s beautiful staging of A Christmas Carol and are thrilled to be able to make this early announcement that the show will return to Bristol next year. Dickens’ classic story about the thawing of a frozen heart has proved to be the perfect end to our Year of Change and we hope that by bringing the show back next year we will be able to share this magical production with even more people from the city and region.”

Tom Morris, Bristol Old Vic’s Artistic Director and adaptor of A Christmas Carol said: “It is wonderful to see our invitation of welcome into the newly reopened building being taken up in such numbers with people eager to experience all the theatre now has to offer. This announcement, alongside the announcement of our full 2019 programme, coming in January, aims to build on that invitation and welcome. So thank you, Bristol. In a simple and true way, thank you for coming!”

A Christmas Carol is currently running at Bristol Old Vic until 13 Jan. Best available seats from Jan 2019, or contact Box Office for last-minute availability.

A Christmas Carol returns to Bristol Old Vic from 28 Nov 2019 to 12 Jan 2020.

Five D/deaf and disabled writers announced from South West England for the sixth year of Graeae’s Write to Play programme

Write To Play
  •  Five D/deaf and disabled writers announced from South West England for the sixth year of Graeae’s Write to Play programme, commencing in January 2019
  • Writers will work in partnership with Graeae and South West organisations Nuffield Southampton Theatres,  Bristol Old Vic, Exeter Northcott Theatre, Theatre Royal Plymouth, Wiltshire Creative and Ustinov Studio at Theatre Royal Bath

Write to Play is a bold new writing initiative committed to developing the skills and experience of D/deaf and disabled writers. Over the course of one year, five writers will each write and develop a full-length play through collaboration with some of the most creative minds in the industry.

The first five years of Write to Play have developed the skills of twenty-five playwrights, many of whom have gone on to have work produced professionally. In August 2017, Graeae and the Royal Exchange Theatre produced for the first time a full length play from a Write to Play graduate. Cosmic Scallies by Jackie Hagan (from year 2 of the programme) premiered at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2017, followed by a run at the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester. Both runs played to sell-out houses, 4-star reviews and audience acclaim. Year 5 of the programme will culminate in January 2019, with sharings from each of the writers at the Bush Theatre, London.

The writers for year six of the programme are announced as: Sally Davis, Kellan Frankland, Daisy Higman, Anita MacCallum and Hannah Treadaway.

Commencing in early 2019, the year-long Write to Play programme includes Playwriting 101 (an intensive craft-focussed playwriting course), specialist workshops, mentoring sessions and opportunities to have short pieces of work performed in front of an audience. The programme will not only provide the writers with the opportunity to develop their skills, it will also introduce a new generation of D/deaf and disabled playwrights to the wider theatre landscape.

‘As a writer I am constantly frustrated by the lack of opportunities for new talent. Write to play is a vital programme that allows D/deaf and disabled voices to tell their own stories in their own distinctive way. Without such a scheme we’re sunk.’
Jack Thorne, Graeae Patron

‘It’s so wonderful to be able to welcome five new writers to the Write to Play programme and to the Graeae family, and I can’t wait to work with them all over the next year alongside our brilliant South West partner organisations. The first five years of Write to Play have uncovered and nurtured such enormous talent, and I have no doubt that year 6 will be any different. With enormous thanks as always to all the funders on the programme including Arts Council England, Esmee Fairbairn Foundation and The Backstage Trust.’
Jenny Sealey, Artistic Director, Graeae Theatre Company

Writer Quotes

The Write to Play programme (incorporating Play Labs and Play Chats) is funded by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, Arts Council England and Backstage Trust.

‘It’s going to be an adventure. Like all good adventures, it’s exciting and a bit scary, and we’ll end up somewhere unexpected and look back on this-time-last-year thinking how small we all were, and how much we’ve grown. It’s a really huge thing to be in the situation of being asked “what do you need?” instead of being told, “just do what you can,” so I’m really grateful to be given this opportunity. I wish everyone could have equal access instead of a lucky few.’ Sally Davis

‘I can’t wait to start Write to Play! I’ve wanted to be a part of Write to Play ever since I heard about it 3 years ago and I’ve been hoping that it would come down to the South West and so I’m ecstatic that it has! I feel very lucky to be a part of this programme. I’m really looking forward to meeting the other writers, working with a mentor and developing my writing further.’ Kellan Frankland

‘I’m thrilled to be joining this year’s Write to Play scheme. It’s an incredible opportunity and I feel honoured to have been selected. It’s great that D/deaf and disabled writers from the South West are being developed and given a platform for their work and I hope to do the region proud.  I’m bursting with ideas and itching to get started – bring on January!’ Daisy Higman

‘2019 is going to be a year of growth and opportunity. I’m looking forward to the challenges and support that ‘Write to Play’ will introduce me to. Being able to give my writing time and space to develop is such a gift, as well as meeting new writers. It’s a journey that I’m ready to take.’Anita MacCallum

‘I’m really excited and grateful to be part of Write to Play! The chance to develop my writing through the mentoring and workshops will be invaluable, and I’m really looking forward to meeting the other writers and working with such brilliant organisations! It’s an amazing opportunity and I can’t wait to get started!’ Hannah Treadaway

Partner Quotes

‘We are excited to be working with Graeae and the other South West partners on this wonderful scheme. Not only will it enrich our programme here at NST, but Write to Play will open new pathways for us to engage new voices and represent those voices on our stage. We look forward to inspiring new artists and audiences, challenging our perspectives and working towards accessible theatre.’ Sam Hodges, Director, Nuffield Southampton Theatres

‘Working with Graeae on the Write to Play project is an essential part of our commitment to supporting South West artists. Wiltshire Creative celebrates the diversity of our regional voice and wants to make sure that everyone is part of the conversation. We look forward to introducing these fantastic writers to our audience.’ Gareth Machin, Artistic Director, Wiltshire Creative

‘We are excited to be working with our friends at Graeae on Write to Play this year. It’s a project of great reach and invention and is just what the South West needs in uncovering yet more new and diverse artists. Theatre Royal Plymouth has been engaged in the finding of new relationships and the producing of new theatre for two decades now and we’re so much looking forward to tapping into the wider experience and enthusiasm that Graeae can provide along with our partner theatres in this great initiative.’ Simon Stokes, Artistic Director, Theatre Royal Plymouth

‘We are delighted to be working with Graeae and our partner producing theatres in the South West on this exciting programme. New writing is the life blood of theatre, and ensuring that the stories we encounter and the voices we hear in our regional theatres represent the diversity of the communities we serve is vital. This is an important project for the Northcott and the region.’ Daniel Buckroyd, Artistic Director, Exeter Northcott Theatre

‘We’re delighted to be a partner organisation with Graeae’s Write to Play 2019. The Ustinov Studio programming searches for interesting stories told in diverse ways. In partnering with Graeae we’re pleased to support the development of D/deaf and disabled writers, whilst also diversifying the Ustinov’s audience. Participating in Write to Play will benefit Theatre Royal Bath as much as the artists involved. We look forward to championing new voices in the South West whilst inspiring theatre makers and audiences to think about disability differently.’
Danny Moar, Director, Theatre Royal Bath

‘As we prepare to open our reimagined front door and foyer spaces in the Autumn, Bristol Old Vic is thrilled to announce our participation in Graeae’s Write to Play initiative. The central thrust of Steve Tompkins’ redesign has been (quite literally) to knock down the walls which have kept the most beautiful theatre in the country a hidden secret to many, in the city dubbed as “the most creative in Europe”. Our theatre must be open to all, and its programme properly representative of the enormous range of talents, backgrounds and perspectives found in Bristol’s population. ‘Write to Play’ offers a vital path towards that ambition.’
Tom Morris, Artistic Director, Bristol Old Vic

Applications open tomorrow for Bristol Old Vic’s 2019-20 Leverhulme Arts Scholarship recipients

Bristol Old Vic’s Ferment on the hunt for 2019-20 Leverhulme Arts Scholarship Recipients. Applications Open Thurs 22 Nov.

Announcing the return of the Leverhulme Arts Scholarships in 2019 for its third year!

Supported by the Leverhulme Trust, Bristol Old Vic’s Ferment team are again offering 5 Leverhulme Scholarships to brilliant artists across disciplines, living and making work in the South West.

Each recipient will receive a £5000 bursary and a bespoke 12 months of support from Bristol Ferment, including plenty of opportunities to engage with Ferment activity – from sharing a piece of work-in-progress during the Ferment Fortnights, to having a space to work regularly, to spending time away with other scholars on a week-long residential; it’s all part of the package.

This opportunity exists to support individuals to think about their own creative development; we understand that sometimes the best way to support artists is to fund the individual, without the pressure of outcome – a previous Leverhulme scholar described their year as an opportunity to ‘breathe in’, a chance to sustain and reflect before moving forwards with renewed ambition.

Ferment Producer Ben Atterbury said: “I’m delighted to launch the next raft of applications for our Leverhulme Scholarships, generously supported by the Leverhulme Trust. Over the past two years these vital scholarships have enabled Ferment to work with ten brilliant artists from the South West across a range of disciplines; we’ve seen this opportunity give space and time for thought, reflection and research as well as vital financial investment in them and their practice.

Ferment’s support is always driven by people rather than outcomes and two years into this scheme, we’re beginning to see the fruits of this opportunity emerge in the ambitious projects our previous scholars are now working on, and the peer support they continue to give to each other. I can’t wait to work with our next group.”

HOW TO APPLY:
If this sounds like the opportunity for you and you’d like to apply for a Leverhulme Scholarship, please complete the form via the link below. You’ll be asked to give some of your details and please choose to complete one of the following;

  • A short statement of no more than 4000 characters
  • A Youtube/Vimeo link to a video of no more than 2 minutes on the same subject

Please apply via this link: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/3RYT757

Closing date for applications: 5pm, December 20th 2018.

If you’d like to have an informal chat with Ferment Producer Ben Atterbury about this opportunity, please drop him a line at [email protected]org.uk or head over to www.bristololdvic.org.uk/ferment.

Bristol Old Vic folks understand that forms don’t work for everyone – if you would like to apply, but would rather a different format to what is listed above, email Ben to make an alternative arrangement.

Pictures of Bristol Old Vic’s new Heritage Experience released

Bristol Old Vic's new Heritage Experience

The final piece of Bristol Old Vic’s radical reinvention will fall into place this weekend (10–11 Nov) with the launch of its brand new interactive heritage experience. The fascinating history of Bristol Old Vic, the oldest continuously working theatre in the English-speaking world, will be brought to life in a collaboration with Bristol Archives and the University of Bristol Theatre Collection as the theatre unveils a host of experiences and attractions, supported by the National Lottery.

Over the upcoming weekend, Bristol Old Vic will introduce its new interactive experiences, exhibition spaces, tours and workshops that tell the story of this iconic theatre over the last 252 years. After a launch event on the evening of 9 Nov, general public will able to access all heritage has to offer from 8am, Saturday 10 Nov every day of the week, during the theatre’s opening hours. Booking is only required for Guided Tours which will take place twice weekly. With stunning video projections, an immersive augmented reality experience and fully redesigned public areas within the theatre, it will become one of Bristol’s key visitor destinations with something for everyone.

The final piece of Bristol Old Vic’s radical reinvention will fall into place this weekend (10–11 Nov) with the launch of its brand new interactive heritage experience. The fascinating history of Bristol Old Vic, the oldest continuously working theatre in the English-speaking world, will be brought to life in a collaboration with Bristol Archives and the University of Bristol Theatre Collection as the theatre unveils a host of experiences and attractions, supported by the National Lottery.

Over the upcoming weekend, Bristol Old Vic will introduce its new interactive experiences, exhibition spaces, tours and workshops that tell the story of this iconic theatre over the last 252 years. After a launch event on the evening of 9 Nov, general public will able to access all heritage has to offer from 8am, Saturday 10 Nov every day of the week, during the theatre’s opening hours. Booking is only required for Guided Tours which will take place twice weekly. With stunning video projections, an immersive augmented reality experience and fully redesigned public areas within the theatre, it will become one of Bristol’s key visitor destinations with something for everyone.

From 8am, 10 November, there will be a host of heritage experiences included in your visit to Bristol Old Vic, to make it even more memorable…

An Audience with the Past
See characters, playbills and posters from the past 250 years side by side for the very first time.
Designed and installed by Emily Ketteringham

The House is Open!
Watch the original Theatre wall transform before your eyes in this exclusive pre-show mapped projection film, marking the architectural changes of our building.
Designed in collaboration between Aardman and Limbic Cinema

Noises Off: 250 Years of Sound Technology in the Theatre
Learn the tricks of the trade and become a theatre technician in our interactive corridor, and sneak a peek at our 18th-century sound equipment: the Thunder Run.
Designed by Joe Ravenhill of 2FeetBelow

A Window to the Past
Step back in time and explore different parts of the Foyer across four time periods with our immersive augmented reality experience.
Designed in collaboration between Limbic Cinema and ZubrVR

Trials and Triumphs: 250 Years of Bristol Old Vic
An historic illustrated timeline of our Theatre’s history.
Designed and painted by Hana Sunny Whaler

A Touch of History
Discover famous faces, past productions and show material using our digital archive interface.
Software designed by Nick Harpley of Saztooma

King Street: From Marsh to Metropolis
Uncover local legends and the rise and fall of King Street in our graffiti-style timeline.
Designed and painted by Bex Glover

Limelight
Created by our talented Made in Bristol company, Limelight tours will offer a chance to meet some of the famous figures from the theatre’s history face-to-face!

Listings Information:
Heritage Launch
Building-wide
Sat 10 – Sun 11 Nov
10am – 8pm

An Audience with the Past
See characters, playbills and posters from the past 250 years side by side for the very first time.
Designed and installed by Emily Ketteringham

The House is Open!
Watch the original Theatre wall transform before your eyes in this exclusive pre-show mapped projection film, marking the architectural changes of our building.
Designed in collaboration between Aardman and Limbic Cinema

Noises Off: 250 Years of Sound Technology in the Theatre
Learn the tricks of the trade and become a theatre technician in our interactive corridor, and sneak a peek at our 18th-century sound equipment: the Thunder Run.
Designed by Joe Ravenhill of 2FeetBelow

A Window to the Past
Step back in time and explore different parts of the Foyer across four time periods with our immersive augmented reality experience.
Designed in collaboration between Limbic Cinema and ZubrVR

Trials and Triumphs: 250 Years of Bristol Old Vic
An historic illustrated timeline of our Theatre’s history.
Designed and painted by Hana Sunny Whaler

A Touch of History
Discover famous faces, past productions and show material using our digital archive interface.
Software designed by Nick Harpley of Saztooma

King Street: From Marsh to Metropolis
Uncover local legends and the rise and fall of King Street in our graffiti-style timeline.
Designed and painted by Bex Glover

Limelight
Created by our talented Made in Bristol company, Limelight tours will offer a chance to meet some of the famous figures from the theatre’s history face-to-face!

Listings Information:
Heritage Launch
Building-wide
Sat 10 – Sun 11 Nov
10am – 8pm

The Legend and the Legacy: Olivier Award-winning play The Mountaintop comes to Bristol

Gbolahan Obisesan
Gbolahan Obisesan

Gbolahan Obisesan

Bristol Old Vic presents The Mountaintop as part of its continued commitment to re-examining Bristol’s relationship with the past, highlighted through the theatre’s ongoing Year of Change.

Following a sell-out run at the Young Vic theatre in 2016, Katori Hall’s Olivier Award-winning play The Mountaintop has embarked on a 7–venue UK tour, with Bristol Old Vic’s new Weston Studio marking its penultimate stop from 21–24 Nov. The production received rave reviews and was most recently commended for being a “skilled examination of the issues of racism that still linger in today’s world; a reminder of the beliefs that spurred on the fight, and the work that must carry on.” (Broadway World, ★★★★).

Katori Hall’s The Mountaintop, premièred at Theatre503 in 2009, then transferred to the West End in 2010 and won the Olivier Award for Best New Play. Following its West End run, the play opened on Broadway in October 2011 to critical acclaim.

This Nuffield Southampton Theatres, Reading Rep and Desara Bosnja co-production is directed by JMK Award 2016 Winner Roy Alexander Weiseand offers an intimate look into the hours before Martin Luther King Jr.’s death.

After delivering his famous “I’ve been to the mountaintop” speech, Dr King goes to Room 306 at the Lorraine Motel to rest, before another long day of campaigning. With a storm raging outside, a maid, Camae, arrives to deliver his cup of coffee and his world is spun on its axis.

The Mountaintop chips away at the myth of the great man to expose his fears about his family, his country and the ever-looming threat of violent death. Set during the height of America’s Civil Rights Movement, Katori Hall’s sharp and powerful play confronts his legend and his legacy. Are we really free or do we live in a world of false liberation?

Gbolahan Obisesan played Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the Young Vic’s original 2016 production and is now reviving the role on tour. As an actor, his theatre credits also include The Bird Woman Of Lewisham (Arcola Theatre), The Inspectors Call (Etcetera Theatre), Concrete Jungle, Piano Forte (Courtyard Theatre), Holyland (Edinburgh/Pleasance/Lyric Hammersmith), The Arbitrary Adventures Of An Accidental Terrorist (Lyric Hammersmith), A Midsummer Night’s DreamOedipus The King and A Hip-Hop Musical (Bloomsbury Theatre). Television credits include Forty-something; Watch over Me!; and short film credits include The Good Sonand Beyond the Blade. Obisesan is also a playwright and director.

Rochelle Rose plays Camae. Her theatre credits include Cinderella (Oxford Playhouse), The Winter’s Tale (The Orange Tree Theatre), Shipwrecked! The Amazing Adventures of Louis de Rougemont (The Jack Studio Theatre), One Monkey Don’t Stop No Show (Eclipse Theatre/Kiln Theatre) and Their Eyes Were Watching God. Television credits include Lawful Killing (BBC One); Hood Documentary (BBC Three/Fudge Park Productions) and short films include Pipe Up (Company of Angels) and Ghosts (Identity Filmworks).

Katori Hall is an Olivier Award-winning playwright. Her other work includes Tina Turner the Musical, the award-wining Hurt VillageHoodoo LoveRemembrance, Saturday Night/Sunday Morning and Pussy Valley, which is being adapted into a TV series for US network STARZ.

Roy Alexander Weise is the 19th annual winner of the James Menzies-Kitchin Award and an Associate Director at Harts Theatre Company. His theatre credits include Nine Night (National Theatre & West End transfer), Jekyll and Hyde (National Youth Theatre), Dead Don’t Floss (National Theatre), The Ugly One (Park Theatre), The Dark (Ovalhouse), Primetime(Royal Court Theatre), Stone Face (Finborough Theatre) and Br’er Cotton(Theatre503).

★★★★★ City A.M. ★★★★★ Auditorium Mag
★★★★ The Times ★★★★ Evening Standard ★★★★ The Guardian
★★★★ What’s On Stage ★★★★ The Stage ★★★★ Time Out

Listings information:
The Mountaintop
The Weston Studio
Wed 21 Nov – Sat 24 Nov
3pm, 8pm
From £18
Ages 14+

Cast announced for Olivier Award-Winner Giles Terera’s workshop performance of his brand-new play

The Meaning of Zong
The Meaning of Zong

The Meaning of Zong

Hamilton’s Olivier Award-winning actor Giles Terera will present his new play The Meaning of Zong on Bristol Old Vic’s stage this Thursday (11 Oct) for a one-night-only workshop performance. The piece examines the massacre aboard the slave ship Zong in 1781 and the repercussions of these events, which influenced the growing abolition movement in the UK. This rehearsed reading will be followed by a free post-show talk with Giles Terera, Tom Morris and the cast.

Jointly commissioned by the National Theatre and Bristol Old Vic, this October marks the first public sharing of The Meaning of Zong ahead of the play being fully staged in 2019.

Giles Terera is an acclaimed actor, musician and filmmaker, currently starring as Aaron Burr in the UK production of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton – The Musical, for which he won the 2018 Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Musical. The Meaning of Zong is his debut play. Previous theatre credits include The Merchant of Venice (Globe Theatre and International Tour), The Book of Mormon (West End) and Hamlet (National Theatre). Giles is joined by a stellar cast from stage and screen.

Danny Sapani is known on television screens for his appearances in HarlotsPenny DreadfulMisfitsThe Crown, and Broken. His film credits include Danny Boyle’s Trance and The Siege of Jadotville, alongside blockbusters such as Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Black Panther. Danny’s extensive theatre work includes numerous productions at the National Theatre, including the leading role of Ephraim in the critically acclaimed Moon on a Rainbow Shawl, as Jason in Medea opposite Helen McCrory and as Tshembe Matoseh in Les Blancsdirected by Yael Farber. His other theatre credits include; Wig Out at The Royal Court, the title role in Out of Joint’s production of MacbethTo the Green Fields Beyond at the Donmar Warehouse and Brutus in Julius Caesar at The Globe Theatre.

Bristol-based actor Tristan Sturrock also joins the cast. His previous theatre credits at Bristol Old Vic include Handel’s MessiahThe Little MermaidPeter PanCoram BoyTreasure IslandJuliet and her Romeo and Far Away. He has been a performer with renowned theatre company Kneehigh for 30 years and toured the UK as Maxim de Winter in Emma Rice’s Rebecca. Television credits include PoldarkThree Girls and Death in Paradise for the BBC as well as The Crown (Netflix). Film credits include Disney’s recent feature film Christopher Robin.

Enyi Okoronkwo, who most recently played Trofimov in Michael Boyd’s The Cherry Orchard at Bristol Old Vic, joins the workshop ensemble. He currently stars as James in the upcoming Netflix production Giri/Haji. Enyi’s previous theatre credits include Talc in Headlong and Bristol Old Vic’s Junkyard and Luke in Rufus Norris’ wonder.land (National Theatre).

The Meaning of Zong marks the welcome return of Akiya Henry to Bristol Old Vic, where her credits include Swallows and Amazons, Medea and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Akiya has also recently played Olivia in Twelfth Night at The Globe and performed in Emma Rice’s The Little Matchgirl.

Georgia Frost and John Leader return to the Bristol Old Vic stage having recently completed a run as Sully and Harry respectively in Sally Cookson’s critically acclaimed A Monster Calls. Georgia trained at Bristol Old Vic Theatre School where she performed in 13 at Tobacco Factory Theatres and Crave at The Wardrobe Theatre and has since appeared in Theatre Royal Bath’s Little Mermaid. John’s theatre credits include War Horse and Peter Pan (National Theatre), Romeo in Orange Tree Theatre’s Romeo and JulietFour Season: A Reimagining (The Globe) andThe Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe (Leeds Playhouse).

The cast also includes Emmanuelle Cole and Tom Byam-Shaw. Emmanuelle’s theatre credits span An Octoroon (National Theatre), The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time (National Theatre), Kingdom Come (RSC) and The Iliad at the Edinburgh Lyceum, for which she was nominated for Best Female Performance at the Critic’s Award for Theatre in Scotland in 2016. Tom has appeared as Franz Kafka in the TV Series Genius and Wafiq in FX’s Tyrant. His theatre credits include Tender Napalm at Southwark Playhouse and The Tempest at Theatre Royal Haymarket.

Finally, the cast is rounded off with Michael Balogun and Simon Holland Roberts. Michael is a recent graduate of RADA. His theatre credits include Macbeth (National Theatre) and People, Places and Things UK Tour (Headlong). Simon is currently working as Artistic Director for ‘Unbind The Wing’ and has previously appeared in several productions at Theatr Clwyd, including The Taming of the ShrewGlengarry Glen RossHamlet and All My Sons.

Musician Michael Henry accompanies the workshop performance. He is a vocalist, composer, educator and music director who works across genres and disciplines. Trained as a clarinettist and composer at the Royal College of Music, he moved into work as a backing vocalist for international stars Chaka Khan, Diana Ross, Barry Manilow and the Pet Shop Boys. Recent major compositions include his opera Circus Tricks for Tête à Tête, Rocket Symphonyfor Linz: European Capital of Culture, and Stand for BBC Proms.

Listings Information:
The Meaning of Zong
Written by Giles Terera
Bristol Old Vic
Thu 11 Oct, 7:30pm
£12–£10

Bristol Old Vic welcome to the whole community grows with ‘Seeds of Change’ week celebrating black voices and empowerment

Seeds Of Change Week

Bristol Old Vic continues its mission to welcome people from across the city through its brand-new front doors. Seeds of Change (8–12 Oct), is a week of performance, events and discussions sharing stories of black experience and empowerment.

Within the context of Bristol’s Year of Change, Seeds of Change is a curated week of work investigating the mechanisms through which radical social change is, or might be, achieved in Bristol’s Past, Present and Future.

Throughout the week, Tom Morris and Olivier-Award winning Giles Terera(Hamilton: The Musical) will be exploring a new draft of Giles’ debut play about the Abolition movement, The Meaning of Zong, ahead of the play being fully staged at Bristol Old Vic in 2019. The results of these workshops will be shared on the evening of Thu 11 Oct.

Alongside this event will be a host of conversations, performances and films including the return of Miles Chambers and Edson Burton with their much-loved Curry Goat and Fish Fingers. First performed in 2016 across three sell-out nights, this funny, sharp, lyrical exploration of the highs and lows of friendship, writing and the forces that drive creativity returns to Bristol Old Vic’s new Weston Studio – a little darker, a little sharper, a little more salt peppering the humour.

For two nights only on the main stage, Phoenix Dance Theatre present their critically acclaimed smash-hit Windrush: Movement of the People, a lively celebration of the rise of multicultural Britain. Featuring an uplifting soundtrack from calypso, jazz and blues to ska, gospel and reggae, this thrilling new dance piece celebrates the 70th anniversary of the arrival of the SS Empire Windrush that brought the first Caribbean migrants to the UK.

Across six nights, the short film Daughters of Igbo Woman will also be shown in Coopers’ Loft as a free event. Daughters of Igbo Woman is a transnational digital installation comprising a trilogy of literary films made in UK, Nigeria and Nevis respectively. It re-joins and gives voice to three separated and rendered invisible 18th century African women from one family. Nigerian writer Akachi Adimora Ezeigbo creates the grandmother’s voice, African British writer Ros Martin creates the daughter’s voice, and St Kitts & Nevis writer & film-maker Vida Rawlins creates the mother’s voice. There is also the chance to meet the Producer/Director Ros Martin on Wed 10 Oct for a Q&A after the film.

This week will culminate in a grand finale event: 50 Voices for Change, on Fri 12 Oct. 50 Voices for Change will be a celebration of free-wheeling conversational cabaret, of glorious music and powerful speeches from the history of civil rights, alongside personal moments of inspiration from Bristol artists of real vision from across a wide range of genres.

50 Voices for Change also marks 50 years of civil-rights activism since the assassination of Martin Luther King in 1968. Once again ‘50 Voices’ are brought to the stage to give their personal testimony about what social activism means to them and how they use their work and art to make change happen. Contributors include poetry slam champion and Bristol City Poet Vanessa Kisuule, poet and founder of Milk Poetry Malaika Kegode, performance poet Soloman O.B., singer-songwriter and Ujima Radio broadcaster Kizzy Morrell, Bristol-born singers Lady Nade and Dionne Draper and one of the newest additions to Bristol’s choral scene: Sønder Choir.  More artists to be announced next week.

50 Voices for Change is created in partnership with Ujima Radio, celebrating their 10th anniversary and following on from the 2015 event 50 Voices for Malcolm X, which featured local artists and activists (including both Bristol’s Lord and Elected Mayors Cleo Lake and Marvin Rees and spoken word artists Miles Chambers and Edson Burton).

LISTINGS INFORMATION:
Seeds of Change schedule
Mon 8 Oct
Daughters of Igbo Woman

6pm, free, Coopers’ Loft
Curry Goat and Fish Fingers
7.30pm, £8, Studio

Tue 9 Oct 
Daughters of Igbo Woman
6pm, free, Coopers’ Loft
Curry Goat and Fish Fingers
7.30pm, £8, Studio
Windrush: Movement of the People
8pm, £20-£12, Theatre

Wed 10 Oct  
Daughters of Igbo Woman
6pm, free, Coopers’ Loft
Meet the Producer (Ros Martin)
6.30pm, free, Cooper’s Loft
Windrush: Movement of the People
8pm, £20-£12, Theatre

Thur 11 Oct
Daughters of Igbo Woman
6pm, free, Coopers’ Loft
The Meaning of Zong play reading
7.30pm, £12-£10, Theatre

Fri 12 Oct     
Daughters of Igbo Woman
6pm, free, Coopers’ Loft
Voices for Change
7.30pm, £15-£12, Theatre

To book tickets:
www.bristololdvic.org.uk / 0117 987 7877

Smash-hit Twelfth Night comes to Bristol Old Vic

Twelfth Night
Shakespeare’s most loved comedy is heading to Bristol Old Vic (17 Oct – 17 Nov), following a trailblazing run at the Royal Lyceum Theatre in Edinburgh. After Bristol Old Vic’s first collaboration with the Royal Lyceum, the smash-hit, five-star sensation Touching The Void (“Tom Morris’ most accomplished project since War Horse” – The Telegraph, ★ ★ ★ ★ ★), Twelfth Night marks the two leading theatres’ second co-production. Lyceum Associate Artist Wils Wilson (The Strange Undoing Of Prudencia Heart) directs this “hedonistic house party” (The Guardian, ★ ★ ★ ★) with “visual richness, passion, poetry and thought” (The Scotsman, ★ ★ ★ ★).

This celebration of love in all its forms tells the story of Viola and her twin as they wash up on the shores of Illyria, sparking a gender-bending night of mischief and mayhem. Desire and grief collide in a heady cocktail as hidden emotions are aroused in a quartet of lovers. But their frivolity is tinged with cruelty, as the puritanical Malvolio – transformed for a time into a Technicolor alter-ego – is humiliated and abandoned; a man marooned, left behind by a generation he will never understand.

The bacchanalian shenanigans use Welsh Music Prize winner Meilyr Jones’ bold and beautiful compositions as their engine, intertwining early music with contemporary tones. The cast includes multi-award winning performer and writer Christopher Green as Malvolio, Lisa Dwyer Hogg (People, Places and Things, Silent Witness) as Olivia and Guy Hughes (The Little Match Girl) as Andrew Aguecheek.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★ “A triumph of the psychedelic imagination” (The List)
★ ★ ★ ★ Magnificent… powerful and hugely entertaining.” (The Stage)
★ ★ ★ ★ A groovy kind of love awaits” (The Herald)
★ ★ ★ ★ ★ A roaring success” (Just For Culture)

Bristol hosts third City Conversation to address racial inequality in the city

City Conversation
City Conversation

City Conversation

At 6.30pm on Wed 26 September, the third City Conversation addressing Bristol’s reputation as a racially divided city will begin at Cotham School.

Responding to the Runnymede Trust report of 2017, which stated Bristol was “the most segregated core city in the UK”, three Bristol institutions – Bristol Old Vic, Bristol Post and Ujima Radio –announced four far-reaching City Conversations to take place in venues across the city, culminating in a final discussion at Bristol Old Vic in the New Year.

The first City Conversation took place in May at Bristol’s City Academy, located in Easton and Lawrence Hill, part of Bristol’s inner city with a 59.6% BME population. It was attended by over 200 people and asked the question How can we make racial segregation a thing of the past in Bristol? City Conversation II took place in a demographically different part of the city – Withywood, with a 5% BME population. The question What does racial inequality have to do with South Bristol? was asked, as new voices and opinions joined those of the first conversation.

Action points that came from the first two conversations were far-reaching and have been developed into four initial pledges as a commitment to create lasting change in the city:

  • Create a Bristol Curriculum to tell Bristol’s history truthfully and without bias, and provide better educational outcomes.

  • Achieve better representation at board/governance level.

  • Tackle employment inequality to achieve better representation in the general workplace.

  • Find a way to commemorate the city’s relationship with the Transatlantic Slave Trade.

City Conversation III will ask what is missing, how to turn these pledges into realistic action plans, who has to be persuaded in order to make change happen, and what resources might be required.

These City Conversations are Bristol Old Vic, Bristol Post and Ujima Radio’s response to the 2017 Runnymede Trust report which stated that Bristol was the most segregated core city in the UK.

City Conversation III is open to all ages, backgrounds and views. It is a free event, with a crèche provided and free tea/coffee available. The conversation will be BSL interpreted.

Bristol. It’s Your City. Your Voice.
The online conversation continues between City Conversations at: facebook.com/groups/949061235268084/
#CityConversations | @BristolOldVic | @BristolLive | @Ujimaradio

Venue:
COTHAM SCHOOL
Cotham Lawn Road, Bristol BS6 6DT
Wednesday 26 Sep at 6.30pm (Doors 6pm)

FREE, but ticketed
A crèche will be available
The conversation will be BSL interpreted.

How to take part:
You can book your place at the third conversation in the following ways:
Online: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/your-city-your-voice-making-change-real-tickets-47923939794?aff=ebdssbdestsearch
By phone: 0117 987 7877 (Bristol Old Vic Box Office)

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New images reveal dramatic transformation at Bristol Old Vic, UK’s oldest continuously-working theatre