Casting announced for Autumn 2020 show Misfits at Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch

Cast of Misfits

Full casting has been announced for Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch’s upcoming production of Misfits, an innovative new hybrid of live theatre and digital content, playing 12-22 November 2020. Bookers will purchase a ticket which will allow them the choice of watching the show be performed live onstage in front of a socially distanced audience or streamed to their homes, right up until the day of the show. Misfits intertwines four inspirational tales of Essex resilience to make an unmissable world premiere by four of the region’s most exciting playwrights: Anne Odeke, Guleraana Mir, Kenny Emson and Sadie Hasler.

 The play will be rehearsed and performed in a socially distanced environment. It will be co-directed by QTH Artistic Director Douglas Rintoul (As You Like It; In Basildon; The Hired Man, Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch) and Emma Baggott (Stiletto Beach, Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch; Assistant Director for As You Like It, RSC).

The cast is: Anne Odeke (Bartholomew Fair, The Merry Wives of Windsor, The Globe Theatre), who is also writing part of the piece, Gemma Salter (Cruel Intentions, The Assembly Rooms), Mona Goodwin (The Visit, National Theatre) and Thomas Coombes (Save Me, Sky TV).

QTH Artistic Director Douglas Rintoul says: ‘We’re incredibly proud to be commissioning and employing freelancers during this challenging time for this brand new joyous and celebratory play about the Essex experience. This sterling cast will take you on an epic and whirlwind journey through place and time, leaving you a little more in love with this misunderstood region. Enjoy it in the theatre or from the comfort of your sofa, the choice is yours.

For further information please contact Miranda Wilkie, Press & Marketing Officer on 01708 462395 or e-mail

Listings Information

12 – 22 November 2020

A Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch production

MISFITS by Anne Odeke, Guleraana Mir, Kenny Emson and Sadie Hasler

 Co-director Emma Baggot

Co-director Douglas Rintoul

Lighting Designer Stephen Pemble

Sound Designer Adrienne Quartly

Video Designer Daniel Denton

Videographer Chris Faulkner

Costume Supervisor Nicola Thomas

Executive Producer Mathew Russell


Joanna/Alice Anne Odeke

Daisy Gemma Salter

Fiza Mona Goodwin

Tag (Richard) Thomas Coombes

Imogen Heap contributes music to Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch fundraiser

Imogen Heap
Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch has announced that Imogen Heap, the classically trained pioneer in electronic music, is contributing some of her distinctive and beautiful music to support Here I Am, this week’s online event placing the voice of the Theatre’s audience centre stage, being shared nightly at 7.30pm on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.

Amongst a lifetime of credits, Imogen Heap composed the music for the West End hit Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, and is a Grammy and Ivor Novello award winning composer. Born in Havering, Imogen went to Havering Music School and spent time whilst growing up at Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, an important local cultural institution.

Douglas Rintoul, the Theatre’s Artistic Director, recently contacted Imogen to discuss how Imogen could get further involved in the developing cultural life of the borough. As part of this, Imogen is donating the use of her music from some unique performance projects to this important event that shares the collective voice of an extraordinary community.

Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch is also announcing that the project has been devised together by Danielle? Flett and Douglas Rintoul. Danielle has recently appeared in Educating Rita and Stiletto Beach’ in Hornchurch, as well as in a range of roles on screen and on stage (including at the Royal Court, Old Vic and Duke of York’s) and lives locally.

For Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, London Theatre of the Year 2020, ‘Here I Am’ is the latest in a series of important place making projects, including the recent Public Acts production of ‘As You Like It’ in partnership with the National Theatre, and its Essex on Stage project funded by the Clothworkers’ Foundation Theatre award. Collecting over 1,000 responses from audiences about their experiences of lockdown, and reflecting them back in this way, has created a theatrical time-capsule of important detail? that the Theatre can archive and help ensure doesn’t ever get lost.?

Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch to stream epic musical The Hired Man

The Hired Man. Photo Credit: Mark Sepple

Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, Hull Truck Theatre and Oldham Coliseum Theatre have today (10 June) announced that they will be streaming their epic and landmark 2019 revival of The Hired Man to raise vital funds for current and future creative projects, which together reach over 380,000 people a year, while their theatres are closed to the public.

This much loved actor-musician revival played to national critical acclaim across the country, securing three Offie Award nominations and with Lauryn Redding a finalist for Best Female Performance in a Musical. Glowing reviews included:

★★★★ ‘They play Goodall’s glorious folk-based score as if it’s pouring from their very souls.’ Sunday Express

 ‘A gorgeous, resonant new production…Wrenching and wonderful’ Mark Shenton

★★★★★ ‘This is theatre to relish and cherish’ – North West End

★★★★ ‘One of the most well-crafted British Musicals of all time’ – Upstaged Manchester

Based on the stirring novel by Melvyn Bragg first published in 1969, The Hired Man was turned into a musical in 1984. The production features a superb score of rousing foot stomping rhythms and soaring choruses by the award-winning composer Howard Goodall (Bend It Like Beckham, Love Story).

With the support of The Really Useful Group Ltd, the premiere of the streaming will take place on Monday 15 June 2020 at 7.30pm, and will then be available for one week on the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch YouTube channel and via each of three theatres websites.

To donate to the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, visit, or make a donation by text:

QTH 10 to 70085 to donate £10

QTH 15 to 70085 to donate £15

QTH 20 to 70085 to donate £20

UK networks only. Texts cost donation amount plus one standard rate message.

To donate to the Hull Truck Theatre Future Fund, visit

To donate to Oldham Coliseum Theatre, visit

For more information about the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch visit, about Hull Truck Theatre visit and about Oldham Coliseum Theatre visit


Listing Information

 A Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch and Hull Truck Theatre production in association with Oldham Coliseum Theatre

Streaming on the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch YouTube channel, and accessible via the theatre’s websites on Monday 15 June at 7.30pm. Available until midnight on Sunday 21 June.

The Hired Man

Book by Melvyn Bragg, with music and lyrics by Howard Goodall

By arrangement with The Really Useful Group Limited

Director Douglas Rintoul

Designer Jean Chan

Musical Director Ben Goddard

Movement Director Jane Gibson

Lighting Designer Prema Mehta

Sound Designer Chris Murray

Casting Director Matthew Dewsbury

Executive Producer Mathew Russell

Costumer Supervisor Lydia Hardiman

Dialect Coach Louise Jones

Assistant Director Kara M Tyler

 To donate to the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, visit, or make a donation by text:

QTH 10 to 70085 to donate £10

QTH 15 to 70085 to donate £15

QTH 20 to 70085 to donate £20

UK networks only. Texts cost donation amount plus one standard rate message.

To donate to the Hull Truck Theatre Future Fund, visit

To donate to Oldham Coliseum Theatre, visit

For more information about the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch visit, about Hull Truck Theatre visit and about Oldham Coliseum visit


Queen’s Theatre Announces Spring Season 2020

  • Macbeth, co-production of a Shakespeare classic with Derby Theatre, followed by a national tour
  • World premiere of Maggie May by award winning theatre, TV and radio writer Frances Poet, co-produced with Leeds Playhouse
  • World premiere of a brand new musical by Douglas Rintoul, Love Letters, celebrating the very best of Essex, followed by a national tour

Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch has today announced its Spring 2020 season, which will include a revival of Shakespeare’s bloodiest thriller, Macbeth. The revival continues the Theatre’s tradition of quality, classic drama and will be directed by Douglas Rintoul, following his acclaimed productions of Much Ado About Nothing and UK tour of The Crucible. Most recently, Douglas has directed this Summer’s highlight musical adaptation of As You Like It; a European premiere in partnership with the National Theatre. This co-production with Derby Theatre follows successful collaborations on Abigail’s Party, Abi and One Man, Two Guvnors. The show will then go on a national tour, with the Theatre making its first visit to Perth Theatre, and returning to long-term partner New Wolsey Theatre. The production is in response to the feedback from a ‘Learning Lounge’, where local teachers made suggestions about which plays on the secondary school curriculum they would like to see performed. After the huge success of Spring 2019’s production of DNA by Dennis Kelly, which was attended by 39 schools coming from as far as Leeds, Macbeth has already secured thousands of bookings from 23 schools.

The Theatre teams up with Leeds Playhouse for the very first time to produce the world premiere of Maggie May. This heart-warming drama by award-winning theatre, TV and radio writer Frances Poet is a warm, humorous and uplifting story, infused with familiar music, all about enduring love.

 Finally, a brand new musical written and directed by Douglas Rintoul, Love Letters, tells the story of an unposted love letter meant to be sent between a passionate young couple‎ dating, only to be delivered many years later. With a raft of brilliant songs from Essex’s very best‎, with hits ranging from the 60s to today, this funny and popular working class love story promises to be an uplifting night out for everyone proudly calling Essex their home. The production marks the next step in the Theatre’s Essex On Stage programme, going on to tour to Towngate Theatre in Basildon and Yvonne Arnaud Theatre in Guildford.

Essex on Stage is an ambitious new two year programme led by Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, championing positive notions of Essex, celebrating theatre made by working class people and raising aspirations for emerging artists from Essex and Outer East London. It has been made possible by the generous support of The Clothworkers’ Foundation. Previous productions in the first year of the programme include the regional premiere of David Eldridge’s In Basildon, the world premiere of Sadie Hasler’s Stiletto Beach, commissioned by Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, and the homecoming revival of Luke Norris’ So Here We Are. The programme has also included Outer Limits Southend in October 2019 – a weekend festival of scratch theatre and creative networking in venues across Southend – and Essex On Stage play-readings – a day of play-readings from local up and coming writers – in March 2019.

In August 2019 Arts Council England announced an investment of £1 million for the borough of Havering as part of the Creative People and Places programme. Havering Changing is a partnership of 8 local organisations that will seek radical new ideas to engage local communities in arts and culture, support local decision makers and share learnings, through the working themes of ‘On Your Doorstep’, ‘In the Know’ and ‘Communities Celebrating’. The project is being led by Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch working with Clarion Futures (the charitable foundation of Clarion Housing Group), Havering Colleges, Havering Interfaith Forum, Havering Volunteer Centre, Havering Youth Services and myplace, Rainham Association for Village Events (R.A.V.E.), and The Mercury Shopping Centre. It will target communities in Harold Hill, Romford, Rainham, and Orchard Village.

The season launch was delivered from the Theatre’s brand new QLearning Space, opening today, 24 October. This new space was created as part of the QNew project; a renovation of the Theatre’s iconic building for artists, participants and audiences alike. The QLearning Space is a new and energising dedicated space for the Theatre’s expanding range of learning and participatory work with young people and the local community, situated in the heart of the theatre and easily accessible to everyone. Further QNew developments include a new LED lighting system in the auditorium and foyer, which will help towards a 70% reduction in energy, and renovation of the old education room into the QArtist Space. This space will be dedicated to developing new theatre, and will be available to artists throughout the year for research and development, readings and sharings. This is an important step in increasing the support the Theatre can offer to emerging theatre companies and local talent and the ambitions recognised in the Outer Limits programme.

The QNew project has been made possible by contributions from Arts Council England, London Borough of Havering, Veolia Maintenance Trust, Ian McKellen On Stage, The Theatre Trust, Equity Charitable Trust, Tesco Bags of Help, McDonalds Romford, Fowler, Smith & Jones, Rotary Club of Brentwood á Becket and money raised from the QNew Transformation Fee.

For more information about the Theatre visit


Douglas Rintoul, As You Like It at Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch: ‘Public Acts is going to be the biggest and best theatre event of the summer – not just in Havering but in London’.

Douglas Rintoul
Douglas Rintoul

Douglas Rintoul

This August, a company of over 100 community members, professional actors and performance groups from across London will come together to perform a musical adaptation of William Shakespeare’s As You Like It.

Following triumphant performances of Pericles at the National Theatre in summer 2018, this is the second Public Acts production and will take over the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch stage from 24 – 27 August.

Public Acts is a nationwide initiative to create extraordinary acts of theatre and community. Artistic Director Douglas Rintoul at the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch is directing this UK premiere and recently revealed more about working on this inspirational project.

Public Acts is an extraordinary celebration of real London communities. How do you feel working on such an inspirational project and bringing everyone together?

For two years, Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch and the National Theatre have been working with nine inspirational social change organisations from right across London as part of the NT’s Public Acts programme,, including three close to the Queen’s Theatre. The tremendous positivity the project generates in individuals, the organisations, including the National Theatre and ourselves, has blown me away. None of us will be the same. It has opened minds and hearts and created a genuine sense of connectivity right across London.

As You Like It Public Acts Company

As You Like It Public Acts Company

How was the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch selected as the first theatre partner on Public Acts?

A couple of years back, the National Theatre came to the Queen’s Theatre and worked with some of our community members.  The NT was keen to reach out into Outer London so this combined our long history of community engagement. We’re a community hub and we engage over 12,000 people a year which meant we were the ideal partner. I’m very proud that the Theatre is the first theatre partner in this UK-wide project.

After Pericles, how was As You Like It chosen as the next Public Acts production?

About 18 months ago Rufus Norris, the Artistic Director of the National Theatre and Emily Lim, Director of Public Acts, asked what the second year of the programme could look like. I had seen footage of the brilliant Public Works performances from the Public Theater in New York (NT Public Acts is the sister project to the Public Theater’s Public Works). They had made an excellent and contemporary adaptation of As You Like It. I said, let’s do that.  With our long history of innovative and popular musical adaptations of Shakespeare, it felt like the right fit.

How do you feel about directing a cast of over 100 people? This surely has to be your biggest production to date!?

This is my most significant production! The great thing about this show is, it’s not about me. It’s exhilarating to be supporting such a talented, inspirational and energised company.  I can’t wait to start rehearsals.

That’s a lot of people in one building! How has the planning and logistics process been to make this happen?

This project has been in the making for over 18 months. Our Learning & Participation team, as well as pretty much every other member of the staff in the Theatre and the National Theatre Public Acts team, has been working tirelessly to make this project happen. You should see the pile of paperwork that Mathew our Executive Director has on his desk – it could bring the whole office down.  You should also see the size of the spreadsheets!

 What are you most looking forward to on this production?

Seeing the cast in action in performance.

Has there been anything else like this in the Queen’s Theatre’s 65-year history?

We have a long history of community musicals, but we’ve never had an intergenerational community company this large and one made up of members from right across London before. It’s also our first partnership with the National Theatre!

What do you hope audiences will take away from the performance?

This is going to be the biggest and best theatre event of the summer – not just in Havering but in London. It’s unmissable. This will be one audiences will never forget.

For more information about As You Like It, Public Acts and to book tickets visit

As You Like It runs from 24 – 27 August at the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch.


National Theatre’s Public Acts initiative continues with Shakespeare’s As You Like It at Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch

As You Like It Public Acts Company

Following triumphant performances of Pericles at the National Theatre in summer 2018, the next Public Acts production, As You Like It begins rehearsals this week and will play from 24-27 August at Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch. Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch’s Artistic Director Douglas Rintoul directs this musical adaptation first seen at the Delacorte Theater, New York, in 2017 as part of The Public Theater’s Public Works programme.

Forced from their homes, Orlando, Duke Senior, his daughter Rosalind and niece Celia, escape to the Forest of Arden, a fantastical place where all are welcomed and embraced. Lost amidst the trees, they find community and acceptance under the stars.

This UK premiere sees more than one hundred community members, professional actors, and performance groups from across London, come together for this magical tale of faithful friends, feuding families and lovers in disguise. Our Public Acts community partners are Body & Soul, Bromley by Bow Centre, Coram, DABD, The Faith & Belief Forum, HASWA (Havering Asian Social Welfare Association), Open Age, Queen’s Community Group and Thames Reach.

The cast includes Beth Hinton-LeverLinford JohnsonEbony JonelleRohan Reckord and Vedi Roy, alongside over 100 performers recruited through our community partners and cameo groups.

This version of As You Like It, adapted by Laurie Woolery and Shaina Taub, featuring music and lyrics by Shaina Taub, will be directed by Queen’s Theatre Artistic Director Douglas Rintoul, and will feature set and costume design by Hayley Grindle, musical director Yshani Perinpanayagam, choreographer and movement director Sundeep Saini, lighting designer Paul Anderson, sound designer Leigh Davies. The score is infectious, with sounds ranging from calypso to pop, Broadway musical to soul.

Emily Lim, Director of Public Acts said, “We have had a wonderful second year deepening our relationships with all our exceptional community partners and the brilliant Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch. We can’t wait to bring everyone together to get started on rehearsals for our summer production. We are particularly excited to be working with a brand new creative team on this joyful, ambitious adaptation and to be welcoming lots of new community members to the company”.

Douglas Rintoul said, “Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch is thrilled to be the first Theatre partner working with the National Theatre on their excellent Public Acts programme. I can’t wait for our stage here in Outer East London to be the home for As You Like It. The project is transforming lives, communities and organisations (ours included) and we are immensely proud that Hornchurch will be at the heart of that this summer.”

Live captioning and audio description will be available at all five performances.

Public Acts is inspired by Public Works, the Public Theater’s ground-breaking programme in New York and by the visionary participatory work of other theatres and artists across the UK.

Supported by Arts Council England’s Strategic Touring Fund, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Hertz, Mr & Mrs A Mosawi, Simon & Sue Ruddick and Garfield Weston Foundation.

The National Theatre’s Partner for Learning is Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch unveils its autumn season highlights

Love Unspoken - Spare Tyre in association with Queen's Theatre Hornchurch

The Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch has today unveiled its newest additions to its energetic autumn season of produced work, including productions of Love Unspoken with Spare Tyre, Macbeth co-produced with Derby Theatre and Sparky the Elf and the Secret Toyshop.

  • Spare Tyre’s Love Unspoken in association with the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch ( 5 Oct) is a visually stunning, dynamic piece exploring love and the journeys it takes. Punctuated by movements of lucidity, the show navigates love stories and poetry through dance, movement, sound and light. The production is directed by Arti Prashar and developed in collaboration with people living with dementia from South Asian communities.
  •  The Queen’s Theatre is bringing back its charming festive adventure, Sparky the Elf and the Secret Toyshop (– 24 Dec), which will be performed in a secret location in the Theatre. Suitable for accompanied 4 – 9 year olds, this engaging and interactive 45 minute show is guaranteed to get children excited for Santa’s visit.
  • In spring 2020, the Queen’s Theatre will be co-producing Shakespeare’s darkest thriller, Macbeth (7 – 29 Feb) with Derby Theatre. Priority tickets will be available to schools at the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch from Mon 13 May and will go on general sale from October 2019.