Emma Rice’s first production from new company Wise Children to play at Bristol Old Vic in 2019

Emma Rice

Emma Rice

On the first day of rehearsals for Emma Rice’s inaugural production from her Bristol-based company Wise Children, the company announced tour dates to Bristol Old Vic, running from 23 Jan – 9 Feb 2019, with tickets going on sale today. Tickets will go on sale to priority bookers at noon today, with general on sale from 10am, Wednesday 29 Aug.

The company’s first show, also named Wise Children, is an adaptation of Angela Carter’s great last novel. A big, bawdy tangle of theatrical joy and heartbreak, Emma Rice brings her unique, exuberantly impish vision to this celebration of show-business, family, forgiveness and hope. Expect showgirls and Shakespeare, sex and scandal, music, mischief and mistaken identity – and butterflies by the thousand.

Following the world première at The Old Vic, London (who co-produce with Belgrade Theatre Coventry, Oxford Playhouse and York Theatre Royal) the production will tour to venues across the UK including Oxford, Cambridge, York and Coventry. Bristol will mark the ‘home-leg’ of the tour for Wise Children, who are also Associate Artists of Bristol Old Vic for 2018-19.

Emma Rice said today, “It is a joy to share our debut production, Wise Children, with our home city Bristol! And where better to present it than the Bristol Old Vic? Steeped in theatrical history and layers of friendships, old and new – Angela Carter’s glorious and tender novel will fit like a long, satin, burlesque glove!  Wise Children marks the start of an exciting adventure and as we enjoy making firm friends across the region as well as being an Associate Company at the Bristol Old Vic – we feel incredibly lucky to have the support and goodwill of the South West. We can’t wait to share the thrills and spills and show everyone what glamorous naughtiness we have been up to! “What a joy it is to dance and sing!” 

Emma Rice is the Artistic Director of her new company, Wise Children. As Artistic Director of Shakespeare’s Globe (2016/18), she directed Romantics Anonymous, Twelfth Night, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The Little Matchgirl (and Other Happier Tales) which played at Bristol Old Vic for Christmas 2017/18.

For the previous 20 years, she worked for Kneehigh as an actor, director and Artistic Director. Many of her productions will be well-known to Bristol audiences and include: The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk (co-produced with Bristol Old Vic), Tristan & Yseult, 946: The Amazing Story of Adolphus Tips, The Wild Bride, The Red Shoes, The Wooden Frock, The Bacchae, Cymbeline(in association with RSC), A Matter of Life and Death (in association with National Theatre), Rapunzel (in association with Battersea Arts Centre), Brief Encounter (in association with David Pugh and Dafydd Rogers Productions – the production has been revived this year and is currently playing at the Empire Cinema Haymarket), Don John (in association with the RSC and Bristol Old Vic), Wah! Wah! Girls (in association with Sadler’s Wells and Theatre Royal Stratford East for World Stages) and Steptoe and Son.

Other work includes: the West End production of The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, Oedipussy (Spymonkey); The Empress (RSC); and An Audience with Meow Meow (Berkeley Repertory Theatre).