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Cast Announced for Adrian Mole in the West End

Rehearsals begin today for Sue Townsend’s The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole aged 13¾ – The Musical, which will open at the Ambassadors Theatre for a limited season from 15 June until 12 October 2019, with a Gala Night on Tuesday 2 July. The musical has book and lyrics by Jake Brunger, music and lyrics by Pippa Cleary and direction by Luke Sheppard.

The adult cast includes Rosemary Ashe (Felicia Gabriel in The Witches of Eastwick for which she was nominated for an Olivier Award, Carlotta in the original cast of The Phantom of the Opera, Madame Thenardier in Les Misérables, Sister Mary Lazarus in Sister Act UK tour, Kate Hoey MP in Committeeat Donmar Warehouse) as Grandma, Lara Denning (Mrs Wormwood and Miss Honey in Matilda, West End, Ruthless The Musical at Arts Theatre, Mrs Bucket in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Theatre Royal Drury Lane) as Miss Elf/Doreen Slater, John Hopkins (Sir Francis Basset in Poldark, BBC, Endeavour, ITV, regular character Sergeant Dan Scott in Midsomer Murders, ITV, The Boys in the Band at Park Theatre/ Vaudeville, Much Ado About Nothing at Rose Theatre Kingston) as Mr Lucas/Mr Scruton, Andrew Langtree (Ned Ryerson in Groundhog Day at The Old Vic which earned him an Olivier Award nomination,  Troilus & Cressida for the RSC, Imperium for the RSC, Gielgud Theatre, Justin Gallagher in Emmerdale from 2010 – 2012) as George, Amy Ellen Richardson (Ursula March in Sweet Charity at Donmar Warehouse, Kiss Me Kate at Sheffield Crucible, Beautiful: The Carol King Musical UK Tour, Merrily We Roll Along, Menier Chocolate Factory/Harold Pinter, Les Misérables, Queens Theatre) as Pauline, and Ian Talbot OBE(Artistic and Managing Director of Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre until 2008, Wilbur Turnblad in Hairspray at Shaftesbury Theatre, the Fool in King Lear, Hortensio in The Taming Of The Shrew and Trinculo in The Tempest, all for the RSC, Harry Trevor in Kiss Me Kate for BBC Proms, Geoffrey in Alphabetical Order at Bath Theatre Royal/ UK Tour) as Bert Baxtor. Also in the cast are Holly Ashton (1st cover Donna in Mamma Mia!, International tour, A Little Night Music, Frinton Summer Theatre) and Mathew Craig (Narrator in Blood Brothers, UK Tour, The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole, Aged 13 ¾, Menier Chocolate Factory, Rebel Leader in We Will Rock You, UK Tour and Dominion Theatre). The children’s cast is to be announced.

Set in 1980s Leicester, this adaptation of Sue Townsend‘s best-selling book is a timeless tale of teenage angst, family struggles and unrequited love, told through the eyes of tortured poet and misunderstood intellectual Adrian Mole. One of the most enduring comedy characters of all time, he is the hapless, hilarious, spotty teenager who captured the zeitgeist of 1980s Britain, and this critically acclaimed production brings Adrian’s story to life for a new generation of theatregoers.

“Honestly. My family just don’t understand me. Perhaps when I am famous and my diary is discovered people will understand the torment of being a 13¾ year-old intellectual” Adrian Mole.

The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13¾ was Townsend’s first novel and was originally published in 1982 by Methuen, but is now published by Penguin Books. It has sold over 20 million copies worldwide, been translated into 30 languages, and spawned seven sequel Adrian Mole novels. The novels have previously been adapted for the stage, radio and television.

The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole aged 13¾ – The Musical has choreography by Rebecca Howell, set and costume design by Tom Rogers, lighting design by Howard Hudson, sound design by Gregory Clarke, musical direction by Mark Collins, musical supervision & orchestrations by Paul Herbert, children’s casting by Jo Hawes CDG and additional casting by Ellie Collyer-Bristow CDG.

This production is produced by Anthony Clare, Ramin Sabi, Knickerbockerglory, Mark Puddle/Vicky Graham and Curve.

Originally commissioned by Curve and Royal and Derngate, Northampton.

Website: www.adrianmolethemusical.com

Facebook: adrianmolethemusical

Twitter: @adrianmoleuk

Instagram: AdrianMoleUK

LISTINGS INFORMATION

Sue Townsend’s The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole aged 13¾ – The Musical

 15 June – 12 October 2019

Ambassadors Theatre

West Street

London

WC2H 9ND

Ticket Prices: Previews from £15

Performance Times:

Monday – Saturday 7.30pm*

Matinees – Thursday & Saturday 2.30pm

Additional matinee Tuesday 23 July

*7pm start on Tuesday 2 July

Running time: 2 hours 20 minutes (including interval)

Box Office: 0843 904 0061*

*Calls cost 7p per minute plus your phone company’s usual access charge

www.atgtickets.com

Menier Chocolate Factory: Full casting announced for The Secret Diary Of Adrian Mole Aged 13 ¾ – The Musical

The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole
The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole

The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole

The Menier Chocolate Factory today announced the full company for their brand new production of Sue Townsend’s The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 ¾ – The Musical which opens in Adrian’s 50thbirthday year. Luke Sheppard directs Dean Chisnall (George), Lara Denning (Doreen), John Hopkins (Mr Lucas/Mr Scruton), Barry James (Bert), Kelly Price (Pauline) and Gay Soper (Grandma).Benjamin Lewis, Ilan Galkoff and Samuel Menhinick share the role of Adrian; Asha Banks, Georgia Pemberton and Lara Wollington (Pandora), Jason Rennie, Callum Mcdonald and Connor Davies (Barry), and Amir Wilson,  Edward Hooper and Max Robson (Nigel).

Jake Brunger and Pippa Cleary’s musical of Leicester’s favourite teen has undergone a period of further development since its original production at Curve in 2015, and Luke Sheppard’s new production will open at the Menier on 26 July at 3.30pm, with previews from 14 July, and runs until 9 September.

“Honestly. My family just don’t understand me. Perhaps when I am famous and my diary is discovered people will understand the torment of being a 13 ¾ year old intellectual” Adrian Mole.

Set in 1980s Leicester, Sue Townsend’s The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 ¾, follows the daily dramas and misadventures of Adrian’s adolescent life. With dysfunctional parents, ungrateful elders, a growing debt to school bully Barry Kent and an unruly pimple on his chin, life is hard for a misunderstood intellectual who is only 13 ¾… To top it off, when new girl Pandora captures his heart, his best friend Nigel steals hers. Can Adrian win back her love and escape his chaotic family life? 

With an infectious original score, this new adaptation rediscovers this much-loved novel and brings Adrian’s story to life once more.

The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 ¾ was Townsend’s first novel, published by Penguin Books in 1982. It has sold over 20 million copies worldwide, been translated into 30 languages, and spawned 7 sequel Adrian Mole novels. The novels have previously been adapted for the stage, radio and television. This year Adrian celebrates his 50th birthday, and in March saw the publication of a new edition of the first two diaries.

Sue Townsend (1946 – 2014) was one of Britain’s most popular and most loved writers, with over 10 million copies of her books sold in the UK alone. She wrote in secret for many years, eventually joining a writers’ group at the Phoenix Theatre, Leicester in her thirties. At the age of 35, she won the Thames Television Playwright Award for her first play, Womberang, and began her writing career. Other plays followed including The Great Celestial Cow (1984), Ten Tiny Fingers, Nine Tiny Toes (1990), and most recently You, Me and Wii (2010).

Her most famous creation The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 ¾ was published in 1982, and was followed by The Growing Pains of Adrian Mole (1984). These two books made her the best-selling novelist of the 1980s. They have been followed by several more in the same series including Adrian Mole: The Wilderness Years (1993); Adrian Mole: The Cappuccino Years (1998); Adrian Mole and the Weapons of Mass Destruction (2004); and most recently Adrian Mole: The Prostrate Years (2009).

Her other books include Rebuilding Coventry (1988), The Queen and I (1992 – also adapted for the stage), Ghost Children (1997), Queen Camilla (2006) and The Woman Who Went to Bed for a Year (2012).She was an honorary MA of Leicester University, and in 2008 she was made a Distinguished Honorary Fellow. She was an Honorary Doctor of Letters at Loughborough University, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. Her other awards include the James Joyce Award of the Literary and Historical Society of University College Dublin, and the Frink Award at the Women of the Year Awards. In 2009 she was given the Honorary Freedom of Leicester.

 Jake Brunger (book and lyrics) and Pippa Cleary (music and lyrics) met at Bristol University, where they were studying Drama and Music respectively. Their musicals together include: Jet Set Go! (Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Theatre 503 and Jermyn Street Theatre; licensed by Josef Weinberger Ltd), The Great British Soap Opera (Edinburgh Fringe Festival and Jermyn Street Theatre), Red Riding Hood, Treasure Island (Singapore Repertory Theatre) and Prodigy for National Youth Music Theatre. They also wrote the music and lyrics for the 2013 Rose Theatre Kingston Christmas show The Snow Gorilla. In 2013, Cleary won the Arts Foundation Fellowship for Musical Theatre Composition.

Dean Chisnall plays George. He previously appeared in the company’s production of La Cage Aux Folles in the West End. His other theatre work includes Working (Southwark Playhouse), Blood Brothers (UK tour), Shrek (Theatre Royal Drury Lane and UK tour), Love Never Dies, Evita (Adelphi Theatre), Never Forget (Savoy Theatre and UK tour) and The Woman in White (Palace Theatre).

Lara Denning plays Doreen. Her theatre work includes Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (Theatre Royal Drury Lane), Matilda (Cambridge Theatre), The Rocky Horror Show (European tour), Gotta Sing, Gotta Dance, All The Fun of the Fair, You Don’t Bring Me Flowers, Dirty Dancing in Concert (UK tours) and Can Can (Sadlers Wells). Her television work includes Toast of London.

John Hopkins plays Mr Lucas/Mr Scruton. His theatre work includes The Boys in the Band (Park Theatre and Vaudeville Theatre), Ross (Chichester Festival Theatre), Ben Hur (Tricycle Theatre), Holy Warriors(Shakespeare’s Globe), Private Lives (Edinburgh Lyceum), A Mad World My Masters, Titus Andronicus, Candide, Antony and Cleopatra, The Tempest, Venus and Adonis, King John, Julius Caesar, Love In A Wood(all RSC), Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf? (Sheffield Crucible), The Deep Blue Sea (Chichester Festival Theatre) and The 39 Steps (Criterion Theatre). For television, his work includes Poldark, Endeavour, The Lodge, Stan Lee’s Lucky Man, Catastrophe, Dancing On The Edge, Hacks, Secret Diary Of A Call Girl, Merlin, Identity, Wire In The Blood, Robin Hood, The Path to 9/11, Nicholas Nickleby, Love In A Cold Climate, and two series as Detective Sergeant Scott in Midsomer Murders; and for film, The Face Of An Angel, Alice In Wonderland, The Experiment and The Pool.

Barry James returns to the Menier to play Bert – he previously appeared in Little Shop of Horrors (also at Duke of York’s and Ambassadors Theatres). His other theatre work includes for the National Theatre at The Old Vic;  The Merchant of Venice, A Woman Killed with Kindness, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, Volpone, Edward II, Three Sisters, Sancho Panza; for the National Theatre The Rivals, Love for Love, The Threepenny Opera, American Clock, Danton’s Death, Sweeny Todd; and in the West End, Billy, Jesus Christ Superstar, Little Shop of Horrors, Les Miserables, Grand Hotel, She Loves Me, Chicago and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. For television his work includes Thriller, Porridge and The Merchant of Venice; and for film, A Christmas Carol and Further Up Pompeii.

Kelly Price returns to the Menier to play Pauline – she previously appeared in A Little Night Music (also Garrick Theatre – Olivier Award nomination for Best Supporting Performance in a Musical). The Woman in White (Palace Theatre), Mamma Mia (Prince Edward Theatre), It’s a Wonderful Life (Avalon), Guys and Dolls (Piccadilly Theatre), Desperately Seeking Susan (Novello Theatre), Chicago (Cambridge Theatre), The Misanthrope (Comedy Theatre), Zack, That Day We Sang, Little Shop of Horrors (Royal Exchange Manchester), Stepping Out (Salisbury Playhouse), Boeing Boeing, Company (Sheffield Crucible), Perchance to Dream (Finborough Theatre), One Man Two Guvnors (National Theatre tour) and All the Angels: Handel and the First Messiah (Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre). Her television work includes Endeavour, Waterloo Road, Accused – Helen’s Story, Massive and Kombat Opera; and for film, The Sense of An Ending and A Bunch of Amateurs.

Gay Soper returns to the Menier to play Grandma – she previously appeared in Funny Girl (also Savoy Theatre) and Sunday in the Park with George (also Wyndham’s Theatre). Her other theatre work includes Death Takes a Holiday (Charing Cross Theatre), The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (Apollo & Gielgud Theatres), Canterbury Tales (Phoenix), Godspell (Roundhouse and Wyndham’s Theatre), Billy (Theatre Royal Drury Lane), Les Miserables (Palace Theatre), Side By Side By Sondheim (Wyndham’s Theatre), Good (RSC), Mother Courage (National Theatre), Which Witch (Piccadilly Theatre), Lend Me a Tenor, The Mitford Girls (Gielgud Theatre) & Salad Days for Ned Sherrin. Her television work includes Unforgotten, Romany Jones, Rude Health, The Needle Match, Father Dear Father, Bless This House, Barbara, The Ups and Downs of a Handyman, Lace and A Christmas Carol.

Luke Sheppard directs. His credits include Working, Casa Valentina (Southwark Playhouse), Jersey Boys (international tour), Murder for Two, Oliver! (Watermill Newbury), In The Heights (Southwark Playhouse and King Cross Theatre – winner of 3 Olivier Awards), Peter and the Starcatcher (Theatre Royal Northampton), Night Must Fall (Salisbury Playhouse), Stig of the Dump (Arts Theatre), The History Boys (South Hill Park), 101 Dalmatians (Castle Theatre) and Soho Cinders (Arts Ed). As Associate Director, Sheppard has worked onSingin’ in the Rain (Palace Theatre and Chichester Festival Theatre) and Matilda (RSC), and as Assistant Director on Into The Woods (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre).

This production is co-produced with Curve, Leicester in association with Anthony Clare & David Ian Productions.

Listings Information                                            The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 ¾ – The Musical

Venue:                                 Menier Chocolate Factory

Address:                              53 Southwark Street, London, SE1 1RU

Press performance:         26 July at 3.30pm

Dates:                                   14 July – 9 September

Times:                                  Tue – Sat 8pm, matinees Sat and Sun 3.30pm

Box Office:                          020 7378 1713 (£2.50 transaction fee per booking)

Website:                              www.menierchocolatefactory.com (£1.50 transaction fee per booking)

Tickets:                                 Prices vary, as below from discounted preview tickets to premier seats. With the emphasis on ‘the sooner you book, the better the price’:

Prices from £35.00

A meal deal ticket includes a 2-course meal from the pre-theatre menu in the Menier Restaurant as well as the theatre ticket.

www.menierchocolatefactory.com

Twitter: @MenChocFactory

Stephen Schwartz’s WORKING Gives Drama Students Professional Debuts

WORKING

WORKING

Completing the cast of the European Premiere of WORKING at Southwark Playhouse are six young performers all making their professional debuts. Patrick Coulter (Bird College of Dance), Nicola Espallardo (Guildford School of Acting), Izuka Hoyle, Luke Latchman, Huon Mackley (all Arts Educational Schools, London) and Kerri Norville (Bird College of Dance) will join the previously announced Gillian Bevan, Dean Chisnall, Krysten Cummings, Siubhan Harrison, Peter Polycarpou and Liam Tamne.

WORKING opens on 7 June 2017, with previews from 2 June, for a strictly limited season ending 8 July 2017, and is directed by Luke Sheppard.

The musical’s creative team has auditioned over 130 drama school students and aspiring young performers, discovering some of the most exciting upcoming musical theatre talent. With the support of Arts Council England and Unity Theatre Trust, the production will also host workshops for young people in Southwark and Lambeth interested in entering the theatre profession.

Luke Sheppard said of the new company members, “I’m thrilled we are able to welcome these graduates to our company. They are integral to the vision of our production. I hope that this opportunity reflects a fundamental theme of the piece: a new generation asking questions of those who have trod the career path that lies ahead, holding a mirror up to the changing landscape of employment.”

Producer Ramin Sabi said, “We are so grateful to Arts Council England for supporting our endeavour to provide professional opportunities to young people who face so many challenges when entering the world of work. Their grant has helped us to include these actors on the same equal footing as the whole cast and creative team, in accordance with our company’s commitment to Equity’s Professionally Made Professionally Paid campaign.”

WORKING is the extraordinary genre-defining musical from Grammy and Academy Award-winner Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Godspell) based on Studs Terkel’s best-selling book of interviews with the American workforce: Working: People Talk About What They Do All Day and How They Feel About What They Do. The show has been adapted by Stephen Schwartz and Nina Faso, the creators of Godspell and Rags, with additional contributions by Gordon Greenberg.

 This highly original and universal portrait of the American workday is told from the perspective of those that the world so often overlooks – the schoolteacher, the housewife, the fireman and the waitress, amongst many – whose daily grind and aspirations reflect the truths of the people that make up a nation.  WORKING employs a range of musical styles and genres from contributing composers, including five-time Grammy Award-winner James Taylor and Pulitzer Prize-winner Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton, In The Heights), as well as Craig Carnelia, Micki Grant, Mary Rodgers & Susan Birkenhead.

WORKING first opened on Broadway in 1978, under the direction of Stephen Schwartz, with a cast including Patti LuPone, Bob Gunton, Joe Mantegna, David Patrick Kelly and Rex Everhart. The show has since undergone several revisions, with additional songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda being introduced in 2009. WORKING was last performed off-Broadway in December 2012, under the direction of Gordon Greenberg (Holiday Inn, Guys and Dolls, Jacques Brel Is Alive and Well and Living in Paris).

WORKING will have Choreography by Fabian Aloise, Set Design by Jean Chan, Costume Design by Gabriella Slade, Lighting Design by Nic Farman and Sound Design by Tom Marshall, with Musical Supervision by Alex Parker, Musical Direction by Isaac McCullough and Casting by Will Burton CDG.

The new production at Southwark Playhouse is performed by arrangement with Music Theatre International (Europe) Limited.

WORKING is produced by Jack Maple, Ramin Sabi, Christopher Ketner, & D.E.M. Productions.

LISTINGS INFORMATION

2 June – 8 July

Southwark Playhouse
77-85 Newington Causeway
London SE1 6BD

Performance Times:
MondayFriday 7.30pm
Saturday 3.00pm & 7.30pm
N.B Tuesday 4 July – Additional matinee at 3pm

Tickets: £25 and £20 concessions (from £14 during previews)

Box Office:  020 7407 0234

Website:  southwarkplayhouse.co.uk  / www.workingthemusical.co.uk
Facebook: www.facebook.com/SouthwarkPlayhouse
Twitter: @WorkingMusical

Principal Cast Announced for European Premiere of WORKING

Gillian Bevan, Dean Chisnall, Krysten Cummings, Siubhan Harrison, Peter Polycarpou and Liam Tamne will lead the cast of the European Premiere of WORKING, directed by Luke Sheppard, with choreography by Fabian Aloise. WORKING will open at Southwark Playhouse on 7 June 2017, with previews from 2 June, for a strictly limited season ending 8 July 2017. Further casting to be announced.

Gillian Bevan played regular Clare Hunter in the Channel 4 series Teachers. Her other TV credits include recurring roles in Holby City (BBC1) and Doctors (BBC 1). Gillian recently played the title role in the RSC’s production of Cymbeline. Her previous theatre credits include the Witch in Into the Woods (Manchester Royal Exchange), Mrs Wilkinson in Billy Elliot (West End), Polonia in Hamlet (Manchester Royal Exchange) and Road Show (Menier Chocolate Factory).

Krysten Cummings originated the role of Mimi Marquez in the West End production of Rent, for which she received an Olivier Award nomination. She also played the role on Broadway. She most recently appeared in the Arena Tour of Jesus Christ Superstar.

Dean Chisnall is currently playing the Narrator in Blood Brothers (UK Tour). His previous theatre credits include the title role in Shrek the Musical (Theatre Royal Drury Lane & National Tour), LoveNever Dies (Adelphi Theatre), La Cage Aux Folles (Playhouse Theatre) and Never Forget (Savoy).

Siubhan Harrison most recently starred as Sarah Brown in Guys and Dolls (Savoy and Phoenix Theatres). Her other notable theatre credits include Lorene in From Here to Eternity (Shaftesbury Theatre), Sally Simpson in Tommy (Prince Edward Theatre) and Rizzo in Grease (Piccadilly Theatre).

Peter Polycarpou has a wide range of theatre, TV and film credits to his name. He recently appeared as Buddy Fiddler in City of Angels (Donmar Warehouse), Nathan Detroit in Guys and Dolls (Chichester Festival Theatre) & Inspector Messiter in The Magistrate (National Theatre). Peter was part of the original casts of Claude-Michel Schönberg and Alain Boublil’s Les Misérables and Miss Saigon and played Ali Hakim in the National Theatre’s Olivier Award-winning stage and film production of Oklahoma! alongside Hugh Jackman and Maureen Lipman. Peter played regular Chris Theodopolopodous in BBC 1’s Birds of a Feather from 1990-1994 and appeared in the film adaptation of Evita starring Madonna, as well as the 2004 musical film De-Lovely.

Liam Tamne most recently starred as Frank N Furter in Rocky Horror Picture Show (UK Tour). His other theatre credits include Raoul, in The Phantom of the Opera (Her Majesty’s Theatre), Enjolras in Les Misérables (The Queen’s Theatre) and Link Larkin in Hairspray (Shaftesbury Theatre). Liam was part of team Will.I.Am on BBC’s The Voice in 2013.

WORKING is the extraordinary genre-defining musical from Grammy and Academy Award-winner Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Godspell) based on Studs Terkel’s best-selling book of interviews with the American workforce: Working: People Talk About What They Do All Day and How They Feel About What They Do. The show has been adapted by Stephen Schwartz and Nina Faso, the creators of Godspell and Rags, with additional contributions by Gordon Greenberg.

 This highly original and universal portrait of the American workday is told from the perspective of those that the world so often overlooks – the schoolteacher, the housewife, the fireman and the waitress amongst many – whose daily grind and aspirations reflect the truths of the people that make up a nation.  WORKING employs a range of musical styles and genres from contributing composers, including five-time Grammy Award-winner James Taylor and Pulitzer Prize-winner Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton, In The Heights) as well as Craig Carnelia, Micki Grant, Mary Rodgers & Susan Birkenhead.

WORKING first opened on Broadway in 1978, under the direction of Stephen Schwartz, with a cast including Patti LuPone, Bob Gunton, Joe Mantegna, David Patrick Kelly and Rex Everhart. The show has since undergone several revisions, with additional songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda being introduced in 2009. WORKING was last performed off-Broadway in December 2012, under the direction of Gordon Greenberg (Holiday InnGuys and Dolls, Jacques Brel Is Alive and Well and Living in Paris).

WORKING will have Set Design by Jean Chan, Costume Design by Gabriella Slade, Lighting Design by Nic Farman and Sound Design by Tom Marshall with Musical Supervision by Alex Parker, Musical Direction by Isaac McCullough and Casting by Will Burton CDG.

The new production at Southwark Playhouse is performed by arrangement with Music Theatre International (Europe) Limited.

WORKING is produced by Jack Maple, Ramin Sabi & D.E.M. Productions.

Casting announced for Peter and the Starcatcher -A Royal & Derngate, Northampton and Paul Taylor-Mills co-production

Casting has been announced for the much-anticipated European Premiere of Peter and the Starcatcher, being staged by Northampton’s Royal & Derngate this Christmas. Audiences will take an unforgettable journey through the Neverland they never knew, as Northampton’s Royal stage is transformed for this bold new production, directed by Luke Sheppard, who recently helmed the three-time Olivier Award-winning In the Heights.

Winner of five Tony Awards for its hugely successful run on Broadway and one of the most produced plays in America last year, this fascinating and funny prequel to Peter Pan brings one of classic literature’s most beloved characters to life.

Peter and the Starcatcher Evelyn Hoskins and Michael Shea

Peter and the Starcatcher Evelyn Hoskins and Michael Shea © Idil Sukan

Leading the cast is Evelyn Hoskins (Carrie, Southwark Playhouse; This is My Family, Sheffield Crucible and UK tour; Spring Awakening, Lyric Hammersmith) as Molly, Micheal Shea in his professional stage debut as Peter, Greg Haiste (Nell Gwynn, Shakespeare’s Globe and West End; A Christmas Carol, Royal & Derngate) as pirate leader Black Stache and Dan Starkey (Commander Strax in Doctor Who) as Smee.

The cast also features Michael Matus (Phantom of the Opera, West End; The Sound of Music, Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Sebastien Torkia (Travels With My Aunt, Chichester Minerva; Sweeney Todd, West Yorkshire Playhouse and Royal Exchange), and the ensemble is completed by Marc AkinfolarinLewis GriffinIan HarrisTendayi JembereWilliam PenningtonMiles Yekinni and Tom Attwood (also musical director).

The final production in Royal & Derngate’s Made in Northampton 2016 seasonPeter and the Starcatcher is directed by Luke Sheppard, whose recent credits, in addition to In the Heights, include The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 ¾ at Curve Leicester, and Oliver! at the Watermill Theatre, Newbury. Set design is by David Woodhead (Bugsy Malone, Leicester Curve; Titanic, Charing Cross Theatre) and costumes are designed by Gabriella Slade (In the Heights, Kings Cross Theatre, Southwark Playhouse; The Last Mermaid, Wales Millennium Centre). The Lighting Designer is Howard Hudson (Romeo and Juliet, Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company at the Garrick Theatre; The Rivals, Bristol Old Vic) and the Sound Designer is Gareth Fry whose recent credits include Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, with other notable credits including National Theatre of Scotland’s Black Watch and the London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony.

In this fantastical and funny adventure, join Starcatcher apprentice Molly as she embarks on a daring mission to stop a precious cargo of stardust from falling into the wrong hands. As well as meeting a very special orphan who helps to solve the mystery of how he became ‘the boy who never grew up’.

Thirteen actors playing more than 100 characters use ingenious stagecraft, inventive storytelling and live music to whisk audiences to a magical world of lost boys, pirates, and mermaids.

This brand new production of Peter and the Starcatcher premieres from Tuesday 29 November to Saturday 31 December at Royal & Derngate in a collaboration with Paul Taylor-Mills, who also co-produced Luke Sheppard’s hit show In the Heights. Tickets, priced from £10 to £26*, can be booked by calling Box Office on 01604 624811 or visiting www.royalandderngate.co.uk.

The play Peter and the Starcatcher is written by Rick Elice, with music by Wayne Barker. It was originally produced on Broadway by Nancy Nagel Gibbs, Greg Shaffert, Eva Price, Tom Smedes, and Disney Theatrical Productions. It is presented by arrangement with Josef Weinberger Limited on behalf of Music Theatre International.

* A charge of £3 applies for all transactions over £15. Does not apply to Groups, Friends or Disabled Patrons, and is per-transaction, not per-ticket.