David Binder announced as guest Artistic Director for Lift 2018 working alongside CEO Beki Bateson

David Binder

David Binder

Tony Award-winning producer David Binder has today been named as the Guest Artistic Director for London’s pioneering biennial festival of theatre, LIFT 2018, following Mark Ball’s departure to become Associate Artistic Director of Manchester International Festival.

David will work with Beki Bateson (CEO) to drive forward the artistic vision of LIFT 2018 and to deliver an ambitious programme of international work across London throughout the month of June 2018.

An international search for the recruitment of a permanent Artistic Director will commence this summer.

David has worked with LIFT over the past four years, most recently as LIFT’s Artistic Associate. He spearheaded LIFT’s presentations of Taylor Mac at the Hackney Empire, Andrew Schneider’s YOUARENOWHERE at Shoreditch Town Hall, Constanza Macras’ Open For Everything at the Royal Court, and Rara Woulib’s Deblozay in the streets of Greenwich and Deptford, during the 2014 and 2016 festivals.

In New York, inspired by Meltdown, Binder produced The High Line Festival curated by David Bowie. He also produced the Dutch New Island Festival on New York’s Governors Island — ten days of performance, music, theatre and dance from the Netherlands. His TED talk, “The Arts Festival Revolution,” has been seen online by more than a half million people.

Other credits include the Tony Award-winning production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch, 33 Variations starring Jane Fonda, and Of Mice and Men starring James Franco and Chris O’Dowd, the first Broadway show to be filmed by NT Live. David’s revival of A Raisin in the Sun starring Sean Combs, Phylicia Rashad and Audra McDonald, has been widely recognised for its diverse audiences and for its lasting impact on who comes to Broadway.  After being introduced to De La Guarda at LIFT ’ 97, David was inspired to produce the show in New York and later around the world.  Currently, David is co-producing the Barbican/Toneelgroep Amsterdam production of Obsession directed by Ivo van Hove starring Jude Law.

Alongside this new appointment, Beki Bateson will become CEO of the company. As an integral part of the LIFT team since 2009, Beki has been influential in enabling the dynamic collection of international work, which has become the festival’s trademark. Working alongside Mark Ball, Beki has been fundamental to LIFT’s growth, overseeing its development and establishing it as a cultural force on the London, UK and international landscape.

LIFT has been London’s landmark international theatre festival since its conception in 1981. Now with a year-round programme which culminates in a biennial festival, the work is consistently ambitious, presenting and collaborating with outstanding artists from across the world. Mark Ball leaves LIFT as the third Artistic Director following previous artistic leadership under Angharad Wynne-Jones, and co-founders Rose Fenton and Lucy Neal. An international search for the next Artistic Director will commence in the summer of 2017

David Binder said – “I’m thrilled and honoured to be LIFT’s 2018 Guest Artistic Director. For two decades, the festival has acted as my unparalleled guide, taking me to every corner of London. It has introduced me to new forms, new ideas and new communities, and to international artists, who again and again, have changed the way I perceive the world. It has been inspiring to work alongside Mark and the team for the past four years and it’s an opportunity of a lifetime to work with Beki in leading the 2018 Festival. In these very challenging times, I think LIFT’s role is more vital than ever.”

Beki Bateson said – “The beauty and privilege of LIFT is that the values at the heart of our vision are held across the organisation. I look forward to continuing to collaborate with David, the Board, the team, artists and partners to deliver a world class, international festival and will relish the opportunities afforded in leading LIFT as CEO and welcoming and supporting the new Artistic Director.”

Mark Ball said“I’m very confident that under the creative and executive leadership of David and Beki the 2018 festival will be an exciting adventure for LIFT. I’m also delighted by the interest already expressed to me in the permanent role of Artistic Director. LIFT will be able to draw upon an extremely high calibre field of national and international candidates.”

Bernard Donoghue, LIFT Chair said –  “I am delighted that David has accepted my invitation to increase his role at LIFT and become the Guest Artistic Director for our 2018 festival. I and all the LIFT team are enormously grateful to Mark Ball for his vision, leadership, creativity and passion. He will be sorely missed but in David and Beki his artistic legacy is in great hands.”

Sara Poyzer, Kate Graham & Jacqueline Braun to play Donna, Tanya and Rosie in “Mamma Mia!” at London Novello Theatre

Sara Poyzer

Sara Poyzer

As “Mamma Mia!” celebrates its 18th London Birthday, booking extends to 3 March 2018 -tickets on sale from Friday 7 April 2017

Fresh from playing Donna Sheridan in the first ever UK Tour of global smash hit musical MAMMA MIA!, Sara Poyzer will be playing the role at London’s Novello Theatre from Monday 12 June 2017, along with fellow Dynamos, Kate Graham as Tanya and Jacqueline Braun as Rosie.

Creator/Producer Judy Craymer is also delighted to be able to announce, on the eve of the musical’s 18th birthday in London (6 April 2017), that the booking period in London will extend to 3 March 2018, with tickets on sale from Friday 7 April 2017.

Sara Poyzer’s other recent stage work includes Janet in Northern Broadsides’ UK Tour of Jonathan Miller’s production of Rutherford & Son and Billy’s Mum in Billy Elliot (Victoria Palace Theatre, London).  Kate Graham’s other West End credits include Cherry in Sam Mendes’s production of Charlie and the Chocolate Factor (Theatre Royal, Drury Lane) and Mrs Wilkinson in Billy Elliot(Victoria Palace Theatre).  Jacqueline Braun previously  played Rosie in the first UK Tour of MAMMA MIA!.  She has also played the key roles of Eponine in Les Misérables and Mary Magdalene in Jesus Christ Superstar in Germany and Killer Queen in We Will Rock You in Switzerland.

From Monday 12 June, Georgina Castle will be promoted from the ensemble and First Cover Sophie Sheridan, to playing the role in her own right.  She will be joined by Christopher Jordan-Marshall, making his West End debut as Sky.  Also new to the cast of MAMMA MIA! from 12 June will be Bobbie Little as Ali, Harriet Bunton as Lisa, Damian Buhagiar as Pepper and Nye Rees as Eddie, with Caroline Deverill playing the role of Donna Sheridan at certain performances.  They will be joining Richard Trinder, who plays Sam, Alasdair Harvey who plays Harry and Dugald Bruce-Lockhart who plays Bill.

From West End to global phenomenon, MAMMA MIA! is Judy Craymer’s ingenious vision of staging the story-telling magic of ABBA’s timeless songs with an enchanting tale of family and friendship unfolding on a Greek island paradise.  To date, it has been seen by over 60 million people in 50 productions in 16 different languages grossing more than $2 billion at the box office.  In 2011, it became the first Western musical ever to be staged in Mandarin in the People’s Republic of China.  MAMMA MIA! is currently on its first ever UK Tour, receiving great critical and public acclaim.

MAMMA MIA! originally opened in London at the Prince Edward Theatre on 6 April 1999, before transferring to the Prince of Wales Theatre in 2004.  The musical re-opened at the Novello Theatre in 2012.

The London production of MAMMA MIA!  has been seen by nearly 8 million people, played over 7,500 performances and has broken box office records in all three of its London homes.

Produced by Judy Craymer, MAMMA MIA! The Movie, starring Meryl Streep and Pierce Brosnan, is the highest grossing live action musical film of all time.

With music & lyrics by Benny Andersson & Björn Ulvaeus, MAMMA MIA! is written by Catherine Johnson, directed by Phyllida Lloyd and choreographed by Anthony Van Laast. The production is designed by Mark Thompson, with lighting design by Howard Harrison, sound design by Andrew Bruce & Bobby Aitken, and musical supervision, additional material & arrangements by Martin Koch.

 MAMMA MIA! is produced by Judy Craymer, Richard East & Björn Ulvaeus for Littlestar in association with Universal.

National Youth Theatre launches 2017 season

    • NYT launches 2017 season today with 50 play readings in a day of NYT commissions across the UK – from the National Space Centre in Leicester, to a furniture shop in Finsbury Park – streamed via NYT’s channels as they celebrate 50 years of commissioning new writing for young people
    • 2017 programme a new season in the East End, a fifth season in the West End, a partnership with Frantic Assembly, and a restaging of their first ever commission at Wilton’s Music Hall
    • Three – a new play by Sophie Ellerby performed by social inclusion course, ‘playing up’ members at the Arcola from 20 – 22 July
    • Four plays to be staged in an ‘East End Season’ at the Yard Theatre and Wilton’s Music Hall
    • At the Yard Theatre from 8-26 August:
      • The stage adaptation of Mohsin Hamid’s Man Booker shortlisted novel The Reluctant Fundamentalist will return
      • Jessica Swale’s Blue Stockings about the pioneers of female education in the UK, directed by Alice Knight
      • The Host, a new play following a Syrian refugee in South East London by Nessah Muthy, directed by Zoe Lafferty
    •  A restaging of the definitive play on football hooliganism, Zigger Zagger, for its 50th anniversary at Wilton’s Music Hall from 6 – 9 September
    • For a fifth consecutive year the free NYT REP company of sixteen 18- 25 year-olds will perform in repertory in London’s West End from 26 September – 8 December 2017
      • A brand new female-led adaptation of Jekyll and Hyde by Evan Placey, directed by Roy Alexander Weise
      • Frantic Assembly’s Othello directed by Simon Pittman
      • A third play directed by the 2017 Bryan Forbes Bursary, Recipient still to be announced
    • James Bond producer Barbara Broccoli becomes new president of NYT
    • Tickets for the West End season go on sale at 10am on 4 April, tickets for the Yard go on sale on 4 April and tickets for Wilton’s go on sale 10 April more information at www.nyt.org.uk
Jekyll and Hyde

Jekyll and Hyde © Helen Maybanks

Paul Roseby, Artistic Director and Chief Executive of the National Youth Theatre of Great Britain (NYT) has today announced its new season of work. 2017 marks 50 years of the organisation commissioning new work for young people and in celebration 50 play readings are taking place in weird and wonderful locations across the UK today. Some notable writers who received early commissions from NYT, such as James Graham (This House, Finding Neverland), Jack Thorne (Harry Potter and The Cursed Child) and Zawe Ashton have plays being showcased.

The ‘50 Plays in a Day’, performed by NYT members and presented by young producers include, amongst others, James Graham’s political drama Tory Boyz at the Houses of Parliament with NYT alumni Ben Aldridge (Our Girl), Al Smith’s 1960s based Astronaut’s Wives Club at The National Space Centre Leicester, The Host, part of the NYT 2017 season, by Nessah Muthy in Calais at a Help Refugee Warehouse and The World’s Wife by Carol Ann Duffy in Cannock Chase Forest, Staffordshire where Duffy is from. Other readings are taking place at Kenilworth Castle, Birmingham Shakespeare Memorial Library, Porthcawl Comprehensive School in Wales, Sheffield Lyceum Theatre, Wycombe Museum, Govanhill Baths in Glasgow, as well as a pub in Doncaster and a furniture shop in Finsbury Park. The full line up can be found at www.nyt.org.uk/whats-on/50plays. Selected plays will also be broadcast on Facebook Live and can be accessed via the National Youth Theatre’s social media (Twitter/ Facebook) and website.

Blue Stockings

Blue Stockings © Mark Cocksedge

The initiative marks the launch of NYT’s 2017 season which will include their first ever ‘East End season’ at the Yard Theatre this summer after the sell out success of their season of new writing at the Finborough last year. The East End Season will feature Olivier Award-winning Jessica Swale’s Blue Stockings, the premiere of The Host, a new play commission by NYT in response to 23 June 2016 and the European refugee crisis by Nessah Muthy and the return of Mohsin Hamid’s The Reluctant Fundamentalist. In October they will take a 50 strong cast to Wilton’s Music Hall to bring back Peter Terson’s iconic play about football hooliganism, Zigger Zagger, 50 years after it was first commissioned by them. For autumn, following the success of four previous West End REP Seasons, the company will return to the Ambassadors Theatre for a fifth year in September with a brand new female-led adaptation of Jekyll and Hyde exploring women’s roles and rights in Victorian society, by Evan Placey who wrote their 2015 hit Consensual. The second REP show, which marks an exciting new collaboration, will see NYT present Frantic Assembly’s award-winning modern-day Othello under the direction of Frantic’s Associate Director Simon Pittman. NYT’s social inclusion course will also run at the Arcola Theatre with a new play by Sophie Ellerby.

The Reluctant Fundamentalist

The Reluctant Fundamentalist © Helen Murray

It is also announced today that Barbara Broccoli will succeed Lord Waheed Alli as President of the National Youth Theatre. Broccoli is a one of the entertainment industry’s most successful female producers, perhaps best known for her work on the James Bond film franchise, including Skyfall and Spectre. Stage producer credits include Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Chariots of Fire, Once and The Kid Stays in The Picture.

Paul Roseby said: “In 2017 we celebrate our growing diverse cohort by marking 50 years of new writing and I’m delighted to see our entrepreneurial young creatives simultaneously stage 50 plays in 50 locations across the UK today from catalogue of past commissions. I’m also a champion of the need for theatre to have greater parity with sport in education so it’s timely that we bring the passion for the beautiful game and passion for theatre together once more in re-staging Zigger Zagger. With seven further productions and work at over 100 sites nationwide, including a record 44 audition centres, NYT remains a vital and relevant contributor to our cultural landscape. We will continue to strive to do more to make sure that talented young people can access our opportunities regardless of where they’re from or their background.”

Barbara Broccoli said: “I’m delighted to be working with the National Youth Theatre in developing and celebrating the most talented and diverse young people that the UK has to offer.”

Scott Graham, Frantic Assembly’s Artistic Director said: “We are thrilled to be collaborating with this brilliant, young ensemble, engaging again with the fire, rage and beauty at the heart of this classic text. We can’t wait to see this young company take hold of it and make it their own.”

NYT and leading theatre publisher Nick Hern Books is delighted to announce the upcoming publication of National Youth Theatre Monologues: Speeches for Young People, a new collection of audition speeches drawn from material produced by world-leading youth arts organisation the National Youth Theatre of Great Britain. The book, edited by National Youth Theatre Associate Artist Michael Bryher and published on 6 July, contains over 75 monologues all taken from plays performed by the NYT, by writers such as Zawe AshtonMoira Buffini, Carol Ann Duffy, Brian Friel, James Graham, Dennis Kelly, Rebecca Lenkiewicz, Gbolahan Obisesan, Evan Placey and Jack Thorne. The collection also offers tips on performing the speeches from current and former NYT members, plus advice on preparing for auditions.

Arcola Theatre
20 – 22 July
By Sophie Ellerby
Directed by Anna Niland

Outside of the West End, NYT will stage Three by Sophie Ellerby (HighTide First Commissions Writer and NYT REP Company 2013), starring social inclusion participants at the Arcola Theatre as part of NYT’s ‘Playing Up’ course, which is now in its eighth year. The course, for 19 – 24 year olds not in full time education, employment or training, creates productions and commissions new work. It has an 85% success rate of moving young people into higher education, further training or employment, with recent alumni including Seraphina Beh, who after joining NYT’s 2016 REP Company was spotted for a role in Eastenders, where she is currently starring as Madison Drake, Gavi Singh Chera who’s currently appearing in Headlong Theatre’s Pygmalion and Ria Zmitrowicz from ITV’s Mr Selfridge. Ellerby’s urban and domestic new drama following three sisters will be directed by NYT Associate Director Anna Niland (Pigeon English).

The Yard Theatre
8 – 26 August 2017
Press Nights: 9, 16, 23 August 2017

The Reluctant Fundamentalist
8 – 12 August
By Mohsin Hamid
Adapted by Stephanie Street
Directed by Prasanna Puwanarajah

Blue Stockings
14 – 19 August
By Jessica Swale
Directed by Alice Knight

The Host
22 – 26 August
By Nessah Muthy
Directed by Zoe Lafferty

After the sell-out success of their new writing season at the Finborough Theatre in West London last year, a new venture for NYT this summer will be a season of work at East London’s the Yard Theatre. The programme includes two new productions (one new play) and the return of one of the successes from the Finborough season.

The stage adaptation of Mohsin Hamid’s Man Booker Prize shortlisted novel and Hollywood blockbuster film, The Reluctant Fundamentalist will return, having received its World Premiere in NYT’s season of new writing at the Finborough Theatre in 2016. The production looks at the ironies of prejudice and representation in a post 9/11 New York. It follows Pakistani native Changez’s disenchantment with the West and his journey back to Lahore. The production was adapted for stage by Stephanie Street (Sisters) and will be directed by Prasanna Puwanarajah (Moth).

Following its world premiere at the Globe Theatre in 2013, NYT present the first play by Olivier Award winning playwright Jessica Swale (Nell Gwynn) for which she was nominated for the Evening Standards’ Most Promising Playwright Award. Blue Stockings follows the battle at Girton College, Cambridge in 1896 to earn women the right to graduate. Challenging gendered views about women’s moral judgement and suitability to academia the play has heavy parallels with the fight for female suffrage. The brand new production will be directed by Alice Knight, recipient of the 2014 Bryan Forbes Director Bursary Fund.

NYT has also commissioned its most recent play, The Host by Nessah Muthy (recently listed by BBC as a one-to-watch), directed by Zoe Lafferty (Queens of Syria). Commissioned in response to 23 June 2016 and the European refugee crisis, The Host is set on a South East London council estate and tells the story of Riam, a Syrian refugee as she forges new relationships with the family who have taken her in all the while battling the memories of her journey to England.


Wilton’s Music Hall
6 – 9 September
Press Night: 7 September
By Peter Terson
Directed by Juliet Knight

The original football hooliganism play is back.

Widely considered one of the definitive plays on football hooliganism, Zigger Zagger is to return 50 years after becoming the National Youth Theatre’s first ever new writing commission. Peter Terson’s widely studied play will receive a special anniversary production at Wilton’s Music Hall marking half a century since its world premiere. The production is set to have cast of 50 under the direction of Juliet Knight (White Boy).

An irreverent tale of tribalism, the play follows the story of Harry Philton, a passionate fan of the local football team, who struggles between the life of sex, violence and drink football offers and a stable future.

Ambassadors Theatre
26 September – 8 December
Press Nights: 10 and 11 October

Jekyll and Hyde

In a new version by Evan Placey
Based on the novella by Robert Louis Stevenson
Directed by Roy Alexander Weise

NYT present Frantic Assembly’s

By William Shakespeare
Directed by Simon Pittman

Now in its fifth consecutive year, the NYT REP is inspired by the traditional repertory theatre model and was set up by Artistic Director Paul Roseby in 2012 to provide a much needed free alternative to expensive formal training. The course is a unique free talent development initiative allowing the best young talent to work for nine months with leading institutions culminating in three months of performances in the West End. REP company alumni include Sope Dirisu (2013) who is about to play Coriolanus at the RSC, Seraphina Beh who is starring in EastEnders after being spotted in the REP and beginning filming the following week (2016), Ellise Chappell who is set to play a lead role in BBC One’s series of Poldark (2015) and Lauren Lyle (2015) who is filming a major role for a new Amazon series. Mentors to REP members this year include Denise Gough (People Places Things), Paterson Joseph (Peep Show), Shane Zaza (Happy Valley) as well as the Heads of Casting at the Royal Court Theatre and National Theatre.

Everyone has another face they hide behind…

Evan Placey (Consensual for the 2015 NYT REP, Girls Like That) will adapt Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic Victorian novel Jekyll and Hyde. Placey’s female-led adaptation will interrogate the Victorian separate spheres domestic–public dichotomy putting women centre stage where they are completely absent in the novella. The production will explore late nineteenth century society’s relationship to women’s destinies, properties and bodies, against the backdrop of the tumultuous drive for women’s suffrage and first wave feminism. The production will be directed by Roy Alexander Weise (JMK 2016 Winner), who most recently directed the Young Vic’s acclaimed production on The Mountaintop.

This is a mating ground. A dog-eat-dog kind of place. And it’s about to kick off…

In brand new collaboration for 2017, NYT are working in partnership with Frantic Assembly to present their award-winning adaptation of Othello. Their electrifying take on Shakespeare’s thriller is set in 21st century Britain and is celebrated for its physical and collaborative theatre, bringing the sex, violence and jealousy of the tragedy into the modern day. The production will be directed by Simon Pittman (Associate Director, Frantic Assembly).



Take That and David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers present the new musical The Band, written by Tim Firth, with the music of Take That

AJ Bentley, Yasdan Qafouri, Sario Watanabe-Soloman, Nick Carsberg & Curtis T Johns,

AJ Bentley, Yasdan Qafouri, Sario Watanabe-Soloman, Nick Carsberg & Curtis T Johns, © Jay Brooks

David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers and Take That have announced that the UK Tour of Tim Firth’s new musical, THE BAND, with the music of Take That,  will have a major UK Tour, beginning at Manchester Opera House on 8 September, with a national press night on Tuesday 26 September 2017.

The producers made the announcement yesterday, Sunday 2 April, on stage at the Manchester Apollo (where Take That first performed in 1992), following a rapturous reception to a rehearsed reading of the new musical in front of an audience of invited guests, from fans to friends.

Take That said, “We are incredibly proud and excited that our first production as theatre producers is THE BAND – a musical that we think will touch the hearts of not just our fans, but everyone.”

THE BAND is a new musical about what it’s like to grow up with a boyband.  For five 16 year-old friends in 1992, ‘the band’ is everything.  25 years on, we are reunited with the group of friends, now 40-something women, as they try once more to fulfil their dream of meeting their heroes.

The Band will be played by AJ Bentley, Nick Carsberg, Yazdan Qafouri Isfahani, Curtis T Johns and Sario Watanabe-Soloman, who, as Five to Five, won BBC’s Let It Shine.  Playing the parts of Rachel and Young Rachel will be Rachel Lumberg and Faye Christall respectively.  Further casting is to be announced.

THE BAND will be directed by Kim Gavin and Jack Ryder, designed by Jon Bausor and choreographed by Kim Gavin, with lighting design by Patrick Woodroffe, video design by Luke Halls and sound design by Terry Jardine and Nick Lidster.

THE BAND will be produced by David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers and Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Mark Owen, Robbie Williams.

Website – www.thebandmusical.com

Twitter – @TheBandMusical

Instagram – BandMusical

Facebook – /TheBandMusical



Manchester Opera House

8 September 2017 – 30 September 2017


Sheffield Lyceum Theatre

4 October 2017 – 14 October 2017


Bradford Alhambra Theatre

17 October 2017 – 28 October 2017


Southampton Mayflower Theatre

31 October 2017 – 11 November 2017


Llandudno Venue Cymru

14 November 2017 – 25 November 2017


Stoke Regent Theatre

28 November 2017 – 9 December 2017


Cardiff Wales Millennium Centre

9 January 2018 – 20 January 2018


Liverpool Empire Theatre

23 January 2018 – 3 February 2018


Norwich Theatre Royal

6 February 2018 – 17 February 2018


Canterbury Marlowe Theatre

20 February 2018 – 3 March 2018


Hull New Theatre

6 March 2018 – 17 March 2018


Leeds Grand Theatre

20 March 2018 – 31 March 2018


Newcastle Theatre Royal

3 April 2018 – 14 April 2018


The Bristol Hippodrome

17 April 2018 – 28 April 2018


Birmingham Hippodrome

1 May 2018 – 12 May 2018


Plymouth Theatre Royal

15 May 2018 – 26 May 2018


Northampton Royal & Derngate

29 May 2018 – 9 June 2018


Nottingham Theatre Royal

12 June 2018 – 23 June 2018


Glasgow King’s Theatre

26 June 2018 – 7 July 2018


Edinburgh Playhouse

10 July 2018 – 14 July 2018


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Award-winning creative team of The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time reunite for a final farewell to the West End

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time National Theatre London Gielgud Theatre

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, National Theatre London, Gielgud Theatre, Cast 2016/2017 _

The National Theatre hosts a special platform with the original creative team of its award-winning production of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time on Thursday 1 June at 5.15pm, following the matinee performance at the Gielgud Theatre in London.  The discussion will be chaired by ITV’s Arts Editor, Nina Nannar.  Tickets for the platform are £5.

Celebrating the final week of performances in the West End, this exclusive platform brings together the original Olivier and Tony Award®-winning creative team, including  the director Marianne Elliott, playwright, Simon Stephens, Lighting Designer, Paule Constable, Designer, Bunny Christie, Video Designer, Finn Ross, Movement directors:  Scott Graham and Steven Hoggett, Sound Designer Ian Dickinson and composer Adrian Sutton.

At the time of its West End closing on 3 June 2017, Curious Incident will become the Gielgud Theatre’s longest running play in over 45 years.  It will have played over 1,600 performances and been seen by over 1 million people in London, and almost 2 and a half million people world-wide. The original production opened at the NT’s Cottesloe Theatre in September 2012, and transferred to the Apollo Theatre in March 2013 before transferring to the Gielgud Theatre in July 2014.  Curious Incident ran at the Barrymore Theatre in New York from September 2014 until September 2016, winning five Tony Awards® including Best Play and becoming the longest-running play on Broadway in over a decade.


The show tells the story of 15 year old Christopher Boone, who has an extraordinary brain; and is exceptional at maths while ill-equipped to interpret everyday life. He sets out to solve a mystery of who killed his neighbour’s dog, but his detective work takes him on a frightening journey that upturns his world. The role of Christopher has been played by 18 actors since the show originally opened in London. Luke Treadaway, who originated the role at the National Theatre, received a 2013 Olivier Award for Best Actor and Alex Sharp won the Tony Award® for Best Actor on Broadway.

As the National Theatre’s ground-breaking production of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is about to close in the West End, it continues a second hugely successful tour of the UK and Ireland and a tour of North America.  Future international dates include its Canadian premiere at the Princess of Wales Theatre in Toronto from 10 October to 19 November 2017.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, adapted from Mark Haddon’s book by Simon Stephens and directed by Marianne Elliott, is designed by Bunny Christie, with lighting by Paule Constable, video design by Finn Ross, movement by Scott Graham and Steven Hoggett for Frantic Assembly, music by Adrian Sutton and sound by Ian Dickinson for Autograph.

The West End cast comprises of:  Joseph Ayre as Christopher Boone with Jo Castleton as his teacher Siobhan, Nicolas Tennant  as Ed, Sarah Stanley as Judy, Jacqueline Clarke as Mrs Alexander, Amanda Posener as Mrs Shears, Ross Waiton as Roger Shears, Matthew Trevannion as Mr Thompson, Gemma Knight Jones/Danielle Kassaraté, as No.40/Punk Girl, David Nellist as Reverend Peters, and nineteen year old Thomas Dennis is the alternate Christopher (the youngest actor ever to play Christopher). They are joined by Charleen Qwaye, Philip Stewart, Matt Wilman and Penelope McGhie.

Full casting announced for the Olivier award nominated West End transfer of Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour

Following a critically-acclaimed opening at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, subsequent UK tour and sell-out run last summer at the National Theatre, opens in the West End in May 2017 at the Duke of York’s Theatre. Olivier Award-nominated for Best New Comedy and Best Supporting Actress for the entire company, Vicky Featherstone’s smash-hit production of Lee Hall’s adaptation of Alan Warner’s The Sopranos sees Caroline Deyga (Chell), Karen Fishwick (Kay), Kirsty MacLaren (Manda), Frances Mayli McCann (Kylah) and Dawn Sievewright (Fionnula) reprise their roles, with Isis Hainsworth joining the company as Orla. Joining the company on stage are Amy Shackcloth (Musical Director/Keyboard), Lilly Howard (Assistant Musical Director/Keyboard), Emily Linden (Guitar) and Becky Brass (Percussion).

The production opens on 15 May, with previews from 9 May. With tickets from just £10 and all previews priced at £30 and under, over 30,000 tickets will be priced at £30 and under throughout the run.

Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour

Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour

‘Big hearted and enjoyably coarse, but with moments of real poignancy, this is a fearless portrait of adolescence, fuelled by songs and Sambuca.’ Evening Standard

From the creator of Billy Elliot (Lee Hall) comes the uplifting and moving story of six Catholic school girls from Oban, let loose in Edinburgh for the day. Funny, raucous and heart-breaking, Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour is adapted from Alan Warner’s brilliant novel about six young friends on the cusp of change.

Featuring, amongst others, the songs of ELO, Our Ladies is a glorious anthem to friendship, youth and growing up disgracefully.

Prepare thyself for 24 hours of holy chaos. Contains singing, hilarity, sambuca and strong language.

 ‘A high spirited, hilarious, exhilarating and poignant portrait of essentially good, naïve girls having a reckless stab at being bad, and being brave, eager to experience everything life can throw at them and discovering important stuff about themselves and their friendships in the process.’ Mail on Sunday

Winner of a Scotsman Fringe First Award, a Herald Angel Award, a Little Devil Herald Award and a Stage Ensemble Award at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2015, the production also received a Tonic Award at the inaugural awards just last week. Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour is a co-production between the National Theatre of Scotland and Live Theatre, and presented in the West End by Sonia Friedman Productions, Scott M. Delman, Gail Berman Theatricals and Tulchin Bartner Productions in association with William Court Cohen, Ashley M. DeSimone & Jeremiah J. Harris.

Lee Hall has been writer-in-residence at the Royal Shakespeare Company and Live Theatre, Newcastle Upon Tyne. His theatre work includes The Pitmen Painters (Live Theatre/National Theatre of Great Britain/Broadway/West End/UK tour, Evening Standard Best Play Award and TMA Best New Play Award), Billy Elliot – The Musical (West End/Australia/Broadway/Chicago, Olivier Award – Best Musical and nine Tony Awards including Best Book) and Cooking with Elvis (Live Theatre/West End). His adaptations include Shakespeare In Love (Noel Coward Theatre), The Barber of Seville (Bristol Old Vic), The Good Hope(National Theatre of Great Britain), Mother Courage (Shared Experience/Ambassadors Theatre), The Adventures of Pinocchio(Lyric, Hammersmith), A Servant to Two Masters (Royal Shakespeare Company/Young Vic), Mr Puntila and his Man Matti(Almeida Theatre) and Leonce and Lena (Gate Theatre). For opera, his work includes an English adaptation of I Pagliacci (English National Opera). Film work includes War Horse and Billy Elliot (Oscar nomination for Best Screenplay). Television work includes Toast, The Wind in the Willows, A Prince of Hearts and Spoonface Steinberg. Radio work includes I Luv You Jimmy Spud (Writers’ Guild Award Best New Play/Gold Sony Award Best New Play/Alfred Bradley Award/Society of Authors Award),Spoonface Steinberg, I Love You, Ragie Patel, The Sorrows of Sandra Saint, Blood Sugar, Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter, Gristle, Child of the Snow and Child of the Rain, all for the BBC.

Artistic Director of the Royal Court Vicky Featherstone directs – she joined the Royal Court in January 2013. At the Court she has recently directed Cyprus Avenue by David Ireland in the Theatre Upstairs and the Abbey Theatre Dublin, and X by Alistair McDowall in the Theatre Downstairs. Previous directing at the Royal Court includes Zinnie Harris’s How to Hold Your Breath; Molly Davies’s award-winning God Bless the ChildMaidan: Voices from the Uprising; Abi Morgan’s The Mistress Contract; Dennis Kelly’s The Ritual Slaughter of George Mastromas; Ali McDowell’s Talk Show; Nicole Beckwith’s Untitled Matriach Play and The President Has Come to See You by Georgian playwright Lasha Bugadze.  Her other work includes Enquirer, An Appointment with the Wicker Man; 27; The WheelSomersaults (National Theatre of Scotland); The Small Things; Pyrenees; On Blindness; Tiny Dynamite; Crazy Gary’s Mobile Disco; Splendour, and Crave (Paines Plough). She was Artistic Director of Paines Plough 1997-2005 and was the founding Artistic Director of The National Theatre of Scotland 2005-2012. She began her career at West Yorkshire Playhouse and in television.

The National Theatre of Scotland is dedicated to playing the great stages, arts centres, village halls, schools and site-specific locations of Scotland, the UK and internationally. As well as creating ground-breaking productions and working with the most talented theatre-makers, the National Theatre of Scotland produces significant community engagement projects, innovates digitally and works constantly to develop new talent. Central to this is finding pioneering ways to reach current and new audiences and to encourage people’s full participation in the Company’s work. With no performance building of its own, the Company works with existing and new venues and companies to create and tour theatre of the highest quality. Founded in 2006, the Company, in its short life, has become a globally-significant theatrical player, with an extensive repertoire of award-winning work.    The National Theatre of Scotland is supported by the Scottish Government.  www.nationaltheatrescotland.com

Live Theatre is recognised as one of the great new writing theatres on the international stage. Based in Newcastle upon Tyne it is deeply rooted in its local community and produces work as varied and diverse as the audiences it engages with.

As well as championing the art of writing for stage by producing and presenting new plays, Live Theatre finds, nurtures and trains creative talent and uses theatre to unlock the potential of young people.

The theatre is a beautifully restored and refurbished complex of five Grade II listed buildings with state-of-the-art facilities in a unique historical setting including both cabaret style theatre and studio theatres. In 2016, Live Garden, an outdoor performance space, and Live Tales, a centre for children and young people’s creative story writing, were added.

Founded in 1973, Live Theatre is a national leader in developing new strategies for increasing income and assets for the charity. To sustain and extend its artistic programme it has diversified its income streams to include Live Works, the purchase and development of commercial property for rental income; an award winning gastro pub The Broad Chare; The Schoolhouse a hub for creative businesses, and on-line interactive playwriting course www.beaplaywright.com.

Live Theatre is grateful for the support of Arts Council England and the Newcastle Culture Investment Fund through the Community Foundation, and its many other friends and supporters.

For more information visit www.live.org.uk.


Adapted by Lee Hall

From the novel THE SOPRANOS by Alan Warner

Directed by Vicky Featherstone; Music Sourced, Arranged and Supervised by Martin Lowe

Designed by Chloe Lamford; Choreographed by Imogen Knight; Lighting by Lizzie Powell

Sound by Mike Walker


Sonia Friedman Productions, Scott M. Delman, Gail Berman Theatricals & Tulchin Bartner Productions

in association with William Court Cohen, Ashley M. DeSimone & Jeremiah J. Harris


The National Theatre of Scotland and Live Theatre production of


Adapted by Lee Hall

From the novel THE SOPRANOS by Alan Warner

Directed by Vicky Featherstone; Music Sourced, Arranged and Supervised by Martin Lowe

Designed by Chloe Lamford; Choreographed by Imogen Knight; Lighting by Lizzie Powell

Sound by Mike Walker


Duke of York’s Theatre

St Martin’s Lane, London, WC2B 4BG

 9 May – 2 September 2017

Press Night 15 May at 7pm

Box Office: 0844 871 7623

Online:  www.ourladiestheplay.co.uk


Age 16+ Contains strong language and adult themes

Monday to Saturday 7.30pm, Wednesday and Saturday matinee 2.30pm

Reduced price tickets for preview performances – £10 – £30

Post-Opening: Tickets from £10

30,000 tickets at £30 or under across the run

Premium tickets are available


Facebook @OurLadiesLDN

Twitter @OurLadiesLDN 

Instagram @OurLadiesLDN



Park Theatre-Autumn/Winter Season Announced by Artistic Director Jez Bond

Jez Bond
Jez Bond

Jez Bond

Details of Park Theatre’s 10th season for Autumn/Winter 2017 have been announced by Artistic Director Jez Bond. Featuring six world premieres, a very special one man show and a London premiere, the new season includes a plethora of new writing and acclaimed revivals across both spaces in the venue’s fifth year.

Jez Bond says: “I’m excited to be presenting a season peppered with familiar names but also a host of new, up-and-coming talent. With a continued programme of access performances across both spaces and increased diversity on our stages, we’re pushing further, both this season and beyond, to really make Park Theatre an accessible, welcoming venue for everyone.”

 Sir Ian McKellen’s exclusive solo performance of Shakespeare, Tolkien, Others & You opens the new season in PARK200, as Jez Bond directs Sir Ian through the most exciting pages and stages from the actor’s past fifty years, with all funds going to support the theatre’s work. Kevin Elyot’s never-before-seen final play Twilight Song follows, in a performance set to overlap with the 50th anniversary of the 1967 Sexual Offences Act that decriminalised homosexuality. The producers behind Park Theatre’s third West End transfer The Boys In The Band return with a revival of Joe Orton’s seminal black comedy Loot, opening one week after the 50th anniversary of the playwright’s tragic death.

Park Theatre Season 2017

Park Theatre Autumn-Winter 2017 Season 

Roxanna Silbert (Artistic Director of Birmingham Repertory Theatre) then directs Olivier and Tony Award-winning actor Ian McDiarmid in political powerhouse drama What Shadows.Directed by actress, comedian and playwright Kathy Burke, The Retreat follows; a world premiere comedy drama penned by Peep Show, Fresh Meat & Four Lions co-creator and writer Sam Bain. Concluding the PARK200 season in time for Christmas is a revival of Denise Deegan’s Olivier Award-winning, festive heart-warmer Daisy Pulls It Off, from the team behind the previous Park Theatre hit Almost, Maine, and directed by Paulette Randall MBE.

The PARK90 season opens with the world premiere of biochemical topical thriller The View From Nowhere, from the same creative team behind Warehouse of Dreams (Lion & Unicorn Theatre). New black comedy Rabbits follows with a tale of marital strife and bunny murder, as Skins, The News Quiz & Newsjack writer Joe Hampson make his stage writing debut. A familiar play stripped to the core by three actors from one family, Hamlet stars Gyles Brandreth, along with his son Benet and daughter-in-law Kosha Engler (directed by Simon Evans). Then telling the real life story of survivors of the 1966 Aberfan Disaster The Revlon Girl is a touching and affirming play from Neil Anthony Docking. A trio of haunting monologues from a mysterious fishing community intertwines across eras in Fishskin Trousers, written by Elizabeth Kuti. Centred around an accusation of misconduct in the workplace, The Secondary Victim receives its world premiere with an incisive look at contemporary blame culture, directed by Matthew Gould. Closing the PARK90 season with an epic London premiere about love and redemption from 18thcentury Canada, White Fang is written and directed by Jethro Compton (director/adapter of the PARK200 hit The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance), and based on the novel by Jack London.


IN A PICKLE written by Tim Webb and directed by Patrick Lynch, 2017 US Tour starts on 22 April

“As delightful for accompanying adults as for its target audience”

British Theatre Guide

“ A rich, gorgeous production”

Children’s Theatre Reviews

Fresh and direct from its recent London run, renowned young people’s theatre company Oily Cart  has taken its acclaimed and enchanting multi-sensory production of IN A PICKLE (based on Shakespeare’s “The Winter’s Tale”) on its first UK tour since 2012, which kicked off on January 10 at Clwyd Theatr, Mold.

Originally commissioned by the Royal Shakespeare Company as part of the World Shakespeare Festival 2012, this is a fully immersive and joyous theatre experience for children aged 3-5, their families and friends. The young audience will join the performers on a voyage of discovery through the landscapes of Shakespeare’s imagination and the music of his language. This magical show also brings to a close the celebrations of Oily Cart’s 35th anniversary year.

The adventure begins with the shepherdess and her flock of little sheep during a party to celebrate the sheep shearing. When she suddenly discovers a lost baby, the audience embark on an action-packed and interactive journey to find the baby and return it safely to its home. From sailing the salty sea to visiting the mysterious royal court in search of a happy ending, this jam-packed show features many sensory delights, enchanting music, sweet smells and even some inventive and friendly fish to help along the way.

IN A PICKLE is written and originally directed by Oily Cart Artistic Director Tim Webb, directed by Patrick Lynch, designed by Claire de Loon, with musical direction by Max Reinhardt and Sheema Mukherjee who plays her sitar in the show. The music has been composed by Max Reinhardt and Finn Peters. The performers are Griff Fender, Katharine Gray, Stephanie Rutherford and Sheema Mukherjee.

The 2017 USA tour opens on April 22 at BAM until April 30 before heading to Lincoln Center, New York from 3-14 May and ending at Denver Center for the Performing Arts from 19-26 May.

Renowned for devising “all sorts of shows for all sorts of kids”, IN A PICKLE is no exception and certain performances of this production will be “relaxed” shows, open to anyone but are particularly suitable for young children with sensory, communication or learning disabilities, and anyone who would benefit from a less formal environment. Audience members should feel comfortable making noise and moving around as and when they need to.

Patrick Lynch, director of IN A PICKLE (2016/17) says “I started my career in children’s theatre with Oily Cart and directing for them once more is like coming home. I’ve used everything they have taught me over the years to make IN A PICKLE a gentle, absorbing and fantastically fun show which will be an introduction to the world and language of Shakespeare, accessible for any age.”

Oily Cart celebrates 35 years with its original founding team still at the helm. Tim Webb, Claire de Loon and Max Reinhardt started the company in 1981 to entertain young audiences, but shortly after that branched out to create shows for children and young people with PMLD and autism, as well as their original target audience of children aged 3-5. Together they have created over 80 original shows, which have toured the length and breadth of the UK as well as internationally. They are currently working on projects in the USA, Russia and Japan as well as in this country.