Posts

Home Announces new 2019 Theatre Season

HOME

HOME presents a new season of over 20 shows including Emma Rice’s West End Smash Hit Wise Children, 1927’s The Animals and Children Took to the Streets, acclaimed boxing drama One Night in Miami and Headlong’s Shakespeare’s Richard III

  • HOME announces a continued commitment to supporting artists to expand their practice and reach new audiences with new World Premiere productions from Scottee, Javaad Alipoor and Liz Richardson
  • Building-wide celebrations with landmark theatre projects at their heart, including the 25th annual Viva Festival
  • Internationally renowned artists and companies including Hofesh Shechter, The Tiger Lillies, Nassim Soliemanpour and Senior Serrano

Today HOME announced their new theatre season for 2019, with a continued commitment to bold international programming, nurturing new creative talent, and building-wide festivals and celebrations.

The season includes the acclaimed production of Wise Children directed by Emma Rice, whose work includes including Kneehigh’s Brief Encounter and Tristan & Yseult. Choreographer Hofesh Shechter’s Grand Finale is back following a sell-out run at HOME earlier this year; Headlong are back with their new production of Shakespeare’s Richard III; and theatre innovators 1927 present their smash-hit The Animals and Children Took to the Streets. Then in July, there’s Kemp Powers’ One Night In Miamidirected by former Royal Exchange Associate Director Matthew Xia. This powerful production imagines the pivotal moment in American history when Cassius Clay met his friends Malcolm X, Sam Cooke and American Football star Jim Brown following Clay’s heavyweight championship victory.

2019 marks the beginning of a new phase for HOME, where there will be a renewed commitment to not just producing new work, but also growing our collaborations with exciting artists. This season HOME supports World Premieres by Scottee, Javaad Alipoor and Liz Richardson. Javaad’s production Rich Kids of Tehran will be his first new commission since his landmark The Believers Are But Brothers brought him to national attention. Scottee’s new show Class will be his first show at the midscale, opening in HOME’s larger Theatre 1 space.

Dave Moutrey, Director and CEO of HOME said: “HOME exists to produce and develop new art and new artists, responding to our place in the city and the world. Across the next year, starting with Liz, Scottee and Javaad, we will embark on a new creative direction. By collaborating with a generation of artists and theatre-makers to create a fresh canon of work, we want to reach new audiences, help develop new cross-art form practice and tell new stories.”

As well as World Premiere productions developed with HOME, there is a carefully curated programme of new work featuring celebrated emerging artists and award-winning shows from international festivals. It includes Bertrand Lesca & Nasi Voutsas’s new production One, Iman Qureshi’s Papatango Prize winning play The Funeral Director, and a return of Scottee’s hit Fat Blokes. There are also acclaimed Fringe First winners withBreach Theatre’s It’s True, It’s True, It’s True, and Dressed by This Egg.

2019 will feature a vibrant programme of building-wide festivals and seasons which include major productions in the theatres. In April HOME’s annual ¡Viva! Festival of Spanish and Latin American art returns for a 25th year. It features the HOME-commissioned Kingdom by award-winning Catalan company Senor Serrano. HOME will also mark Refugee Week, with a mixed programme including Iranian artist Nassim Soleimanpour’s productionNassim.

Dave Moutrey added: “I believe HOME is at its most impactful when the work on our stages connects with the programme in our cinemas and galleries. In 2019, landmark theatre events sit at the heart of building-wide celebrations, bringing together artists and communities from our region and around the world. !Viva! has added resonance this year with such uncertain times in Europe. This festival promises to be an artistic antidote with another a joyous international cultural party. To mark the 200th anniversary of Peterloo in summer 2019, we’re planning a special programme exploring the timeless interaction between music and political protest. More details will be announced soon.”

Alongside all this, HOME will welcome the famous and the funny to its theatre spaces. Highlights include comedian Mark Thomas with his theatrical examination of our National Health Service in Check Up: Our NHS @ 70; RuPaul’s Drag Race favourite Jinkx Monsoon; and HOME regulars The Tiger Lillies taking a trip into theDevil’s Fairground.

HOME also offers a year-round platform where people throughout Manchester’s communities, especially young people, can engage with the arts. Highlights of a packed programme for 2019 include a new show from CAN Young Artists, and the return of National Theatre Connections Festival, bringing together some of the most exciting writers in the country with the theatre makers of tomorrow.

,

First Look: Production Images : Wise Children at The Old Vic

,

FIRST LOOK: Rehearsal images – Wise Children at The Old Vic

The Old Vic announces Season 4: Part 2

The Kate Prince Company’s SYLVIA
The Kate Prince Company’s SYLVIA

The Kate Prince Company’s SYLVIA

Matthew Warchus’ fourth season as Artistic Director of The Old Vic completes with an Arthur Miller double-bill, a World Premiere by Lucy Prebble and a special One Voice performance. These productions form Part 2 of the season, and follow the previously announced Part 1 consisting of ZooNation: The Kate Prince Company’s production of SYLVIA; Annie-B Parson’s 17c; Emma Rice’s Wise Children; and A Christmas Carol – for which today we also announce further casting.

  • Visionary director Rachel Chavkin makes her Old Vic debut directing Arthur Miller’s The American Clock from 4 February
  • Jeremy Herrin directs Sally Field, Bill Pullman, Jenna Coleman and Colin Morgan in Arthur Miller’s American classic All My Sons in a co-production with Headlong from 15 April
  • Closing the season is A Very Expensive Poison – a new play by Lucy Prebble based on the book by Luke Harding
  • A special One Voice performance to mark 100 years since the Armistice, Remembrance curated by Arinzé Kene and directed by Annabel Bolton
  • Further casting is announced for Jack Thorne’s version of A Christmas Carol directed by Matthew Warchus and starring Stephen Tompkinson as Ebenezer Scrooge.

Coming soon:

  • A musical adaptation of the hit 1983 film, Local Hero, adapted by David Greig and Bill Forsyth, directed by John Crowley and with music and lyrics by Mark Knopfler, will come to The Old Vic in June 2020 following its world premiere at the Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh in 2019.

From The Old Vic:

  • Girl from the North Country opens on 1 October at the Public Theater, New York, and performances have been extended until 9 December. A separate production will also play at the Princess of Wales Theatre, Toronto, from September 2019
  • Following its world premiere, Wise Children, a co-production between The Old Vic and the company of the same name, will go on to tour the UK from November.

Directors Programmes:

  • Katy Rudd is announced as this year’s Baylis Director and Balisha Kara is appointed Baylis Assistant Director to Emma Rice on Wise Children
  • Balisha Kara is also recipient of the Florence Kleiner Bursary, a new initiative to support an emerging woman Director based outside of London to take up a position at The Old Vic, who, due to financial barriers or socio-economic factors, would not ordinarily seek out the role.

Artistic Director Matthew Warchus commented: ‘I’m hugely excited to be welcoming the outstanding American director Rachel Chavkin to The Old Vic. It just so happens that, following Sally Cookson’s A Monster Calls, Kate Prince’s SYLVIA, Annie-B Parson’s 17c and Emma Rice’s Wise Children, Rachel is the fifth auteur director within a six-month period to present their distinctive work on our stage. I anticipate her production of Arthur Miller’s rarely-performed The American Clock will be another thrilling and original piece of theatre not to be missed.

In an adjacent and complimentary production, I am also delighted to be presenting Miller’s incandescent classic All My Sons with the extraordinary line-up of Jeremy Herrin directing American icons Sally Field and Bill Pullman, together with UK stars Jenna Coleman and Colin Morgan, in what I predict will be an unforgettable production of a true twentieth century masterpiece.

Alongside these classic revivals, The Old Vic continues its nascent tradition of delivering vital and pertinent new writing with the world premiere of Lucy Prebble’s A Very Expensive Poison. Inspired by Luke Harding’s vehement account of the extraordinary events surrounding the poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko, this new play from the mutinous writer of Enron and The Effect promises to be a provocative and mind-bending theatrical treat.’

Sunday 4 November, 6pm

To mark 100 years since the Armistice, Arinzé Kene (Girl from the North Country, Misty) curates an evening of five specially commissioned monologues directed by Old Vic Associate Director Annabel Bolton (The Divide) to shine a light on the powerful, poignant and surprising stories often hidden in the shadow of conflict. Writers include Ben Bailey Smith (Doc Brown), Rachel De-Lahay, Monica Dolan and Arinzé Kene. Further writers are to be announced.

This is the latest in a series of One Voice events, specially commissioned monologues that form an integral part of each Old Vic Season. Funded by the TS Eliot Estate, One Voice celebrates the most raw of theatrical forms – a single voice on a stage without scenery, without costume and with nothing to rely on but words.

A CHRISTMAS CAROL A version by Jack Thorne Directed by Matthew Warchus Starring Stephen Tompkinson

Previews from 27 November, press night 5 December

Matthew Warchus’ big-hearted, smash hit production of Charles Dickens’ immortal classic A Christmas Carol returns to The Old Vic, joyously adapted for the stage by Jack Thorne (Harry Potter and the Cursed Child).

Further casting will include Rosanna Bates, Ava Brennan, Jamie Cameron, Peter Caulfield, Oliver Evans, Eugene McCoy, Myra McFadyen, Frances McNamee, Alastair Parker, Michael Rouse, Tim van Eyken and Witney White.

They join Stephen Tompkinson (‘ART’ – West End, Spamalot – West End, Brassed Off and Drop the Dead Donkey) who will star as Ebenezer Scrooge in this year’s production.

Filling the auditorium to the brim with mince pies, music and merriment, a unique staging immerses the audience in this uplifting story.

Suitable for ages 8+.

THE AMERICAN CLOCK By Arthur Miller Directed by Rachel Chavkin

Previews from 4 February, press night 13 February

‘For them the clock would never strike midnight, the dance and the music could never stop…’

The American Clock turns, fortunes are made and lives are broken. In New York City in 1929, the stock market crashed and everything changed.

In an American society governed by race and class, we meet the Baum family as they navigate the aftermath of an unprecedented financial crisis. The world pulses with a soundtrack fusing 1920s swing and jazz with a fiercely contemporary sound, creating a backdrop that spans a vast horizon from choking high rises to rural heartlands.

Visionary director Rachel Chavkin (Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812, Hadestown) presents Arthur Miller’s ground-breaking play about hope, idealism and a nation’s unwavering faith in capitalism.

Suitable for ages 11+.

ALL MY SONS By Arthur Miller Directed by Jeremy Herrin Starring Sally Field, Bill Pullman, Jenna Coleman and Colin Morgan

Previews from Monday 15 April, press night Tuesday 23 April

An Old Vic and Headlong co-production

‘You don’t realise how people can hate, Chris, they can hate so much they’ll tear the world to pieces…’

America, 1947. Despite hard choices and even harder knocks, Joe and Kate Keller are a success story. They have built a home, raised two sons and established a thriving business.

But nothing lasts forever and their contented lives, already shadowed by the loss of their eldest boy to war, are about to shatter. With the return of a figure from the past, long buried truths are forced to the surface and the price of their American dream is laid bare.

Jeremy Herrin directs Sally Field, Bill Pullman, Jenna Coleman and Colin Morgan in Arthur Miller’s blistering drama, All My Sons.

Suitable for ages 11+.

A VERY EXPENSIVE POISON By Lucy Prebble Based on the Book by Luke Harding

WORLD PREMIERE

Dates to be announced

A modern-day assassination in the heart of London. In the strange coming together of high-stakes global politics and radioactive villainy, a man pays with his life.

At this time of unnerving global crises and rumblings of a new Cold War, A Very Expensive Poison sends us careering through the shadowy world of international espionage from the townhouses of Fitzrovia to the brothels of Soho.

With dazzling inventiveness, Lucy Prebble (The Effect, ENRON) reimagines Luke Harding’s jaw-dropping exposé of the events behind the tragic death of Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko.

COMING IN 2020 LOCAL HERO Adapted by David Greig and Bill Forsyth Directed by John Crowley Music and Lyrics by Mark Knopfler Based on the screenplay of the original film, written and directed by Bill Forsyth

June 2020, dates to be announced

‘We’re gonna be rich… filthy dirty rich!’

A wry comedy about a man who sets out to buy a beach, but ends up losing his heart to a village, Bill Forsyth’s magical Local Hero takes to the stage with new music and songs by the legendary Mark Knopfler.

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

Emma Rice
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).

Wise Children – inaugural tour announced with free first performance and further details of the School for Wise Children

Wise Children
Wise Children

Wise Children

Emma Rice on Wise Children…

After months of hard work and a lifetime of dreaming, Wise Children is up and running!

 Our first show, an adaptation of Angela Carter’s iconic novel Wise Children, has just gone on sale at The Old Vic in London where we are proud to be the first Company in Residence. To mark this historic moment we’ve decided to open up the final dress rehearsal to our friends and supporters. It will be our first ever public performance, and we want you to be there to start us off with a bang.  All the tickets will be available for free!

 Since receiving our funding from Arts Council England we have experienced an overwhelming show of support from friends, colleagues, theatres and charities alike. We feel incredibly lucky to be surrounded by such goodwill and to be embraced by our home, the South West!

 This energy and enthusiasm has made our first months a rollercoaster of possibilities and delight. We are particularly indebted to The Old Vic and the amazing group of regional co-producers, Belgrade Theatre Coventry, Oxford Playhouse and York Theatre Royal, whose very real investment in Wise Children has made our dreams a reality. This brave and creative support is what will keep regional touring alive and we couldn’t be more excited to be waving the flag for this vibrant, joyful and historic way of life. Tickets for Wise Children at venues across the country will be on sale soon.

 We are also proud to announce that The School for Wise Children is well and truly underway. We’ve already completed our first course with 12 astonishing theatre musicians, and will be announcing dates for a second course very soon.

 Wise Children is heating up, but the proof will be in the delicious theatre pudding that we are making! Come and taste, come and play, come and be part of this new and thrilling theatre adventure.

Wise Children today announce the tour of their inaugural production as a company – an adaptation of Angela Carter’s Wise Children. Following the world première at The Old Vic 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, Bristol, York and Coventry.

To mark the launch of the company, tickets for final dress rehearsal at The Old Vic will be available free. Tickets will be available through a lottery via Wise Children’s website: www.wisechildren.co.uk.

Also announced today are further details of the company’s School for Wise Children – a new training and apprenticeship scheme. The scheme aims to develop skills across the sector, training independent artists and diversifying the creative workforce. All courses will be affordable and 50% of places will be available free, either to people receiving means-tested benefits, or through referrals from partner organisations. The company is working towards accreditation for courses and the scheduling will be sensitive to artists who need to subsidise their training by working alongside it.

Created and led by Emma Rice, with Executive Director Judith Dimant and Executive Producer Poppy Keeling, Wise Children is an Arts Council, National Portfolio Organisation for 2018-22. Based in Spike Island in Bristol, Wise Children will create and produce world-class, innovative ensemble theatre; a culmination of the process and ethos Emma has developed over her theatrical career. Wise Children will work in partnership with venues to create ensemble work to tour nationally and internationally. Through a series of residencies, the company will develop and diversify audiences.

Website: www.wisechildren.co.uk 

Blog: www.wisechildren.blog

Twitter: @Wise_Children

Facebook: @WiseChildrenCompany

 

Wise Children and The Old Vic present

The world première of

WISE CHILDREN

By Angela Carter

Adapted and directed by Emma Rice

Co-produced by the Belgrade Theatre CoventryOxford Playhouse and York Theatre Royal

‘Let’s have all the skeletons out of the closet, today, of all days!’ It’s 23 April, Shakespeare’s birthday.

In Brixton, Nora and Dora Chance – twin chorus girls born and bred south of the river – are celebrating their 70th birthday. Over the river in Chelsea, their father and greatest actor of his generation Melchior Hazard turns 100 on the same day. As does his twin brother Peregrine. If, in fact, he’s still alive. And if, in truth, Melchior is their real father after all…

A big, bawdy tangle of theatrical joy and heartbreak, Wise Children is a celebration of show business, family, forgiveness and hope. Expect show girls and Shakespeare, sex and scandal, music, mischief and mistaken identity – and butterflies by the thousand.   Emma Rice brings her unique, exuberantly impish vision to Angela Carter’s great last novel, Wise Children, launching her new theatre company of the same name and its London residency at The Old Vic.

The production opens on 17 October at The Old Vic, where Wise Children are a Company in Residence, with previews from 8 October, and running until 10 NovemberWise Children then tours to Oxford Playhouse; Cambridge Arts Theatre; Bristol Old Vic; Derngate Theatre, York Theatre Royal and Belgrade Theatre Coventry, with further venues to be announced shortly.

Emma is the proud and excited Artistic Director of her new company, Wise Children. As Artistic Director of Shakespeare’s Globe (2016/18), she directedRomantics Anonymous, Twelfth Night, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The Little Matchgirl (and Other Happier Tales).

 For the previous 20 years, she worked for Kneehigh as an actor, director and Artistic Director. Her productions for Kneehigh include: The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk, 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).

Wise Children is a company in residence at The Old Vic.

The London run of Wise Children is supported by funding from the London Community Foundation and Cockayne – Grants for the Arts.

Suitable for ages 12+.

SCHOOL FOR WISE CHILDREN

At the heart of Wise Children’s core mission is a commitment to training the next generation of alternative, multi-disciplinary theatre makers and independent artists. The School for Wise Children will provide these opportunities, offering high quality training courses and structured apprenticeships leading to employment for actors, musicians, directors and writers.

Led by Emma – and the leading industry figures who are her regular collaborators – the School for Wise Children is made up of flexible modules of different durations, scheduled in a time frame that is realistic for those who can’t afford to stop work while training. The training will be accredited, and students will complete a series of modules to achieve recognised qualifications.

All courses will be affordable and 50% of all places will be available free, either to people receiving means-tested benefits, or through referrals from partner organisations. These partners are all organisations which use theatre and/or music to engage disadvantaged groups, and will refer talented people who they feel are ready for the next step into a career in the industry.

This commitment is particularly urgent in light of the escalating costs of arts training which is making access into theatre unattainable for young people from lower socio-economic backgrounds. Black and Minority Ethnic young people are disproportionately represented in these groups and, consequently, poorly represented on our stages.

School for Wise Children graduates will also have access to annual paid apprenticeships with the company. Apprenticeships will be paid at living wage or above and will include a position on a Wise Children show, where apprentices will work alongside an experienced mentor who will then continue to provide support and guidance for a further five years.

Students will have access to business support – with sessions on freelancing and financial management, establishing and running theatre companies, arts administration and funding – and to a casting director with particular expertise working with alternative artists.

For further details on how to apply for the School for Wise Children:

https://wisechildren.blog/2018/03/15/school-for-wise-children-apply-now/

Wild Children                                                                                                                                        Tour Listings

The Old Vic

Monday 8 October – Saturday 10 November

Press night: Wednesday 17 October

www.oldvictheatre.com

Box Office: 0844 871 7628

Oxford Playhouse

Tuesday 13 November – Saturday 17 November

www.oxfordplayhouse.com

Box Office: 01865 305305

Cambridge Arts Theatre

Tuesday 20 November – Saturday 24 November

www.cambridgeartstheatre.com

Box Office: 01223 503333

2019

Bristol Old Vic

Weds 23 Jan – Saturday 9 Feb

www.bristololdvic.org.uk

Box Office: 0117 987 7877

York Theatre Royal

Tuesday 5 March – Saturday 16 March

www.yorktheatreroyal.co.uk

Box Office: 01904 623568

Belgrade Theatre, Coventry

Tuesday 2 – Saturday 6 April

www.belgrade.co.uk

Box Office: 024 7655 3055

The Old Vic announces Emma Rice’s Wise Children as new company in residence

Wise Children

Wise ChildrenThe Old Vic will be the London home for Emma Rice’s Wise Children as Company in Residence. Its first production, also titled Wise Children, will be a new adaptation of Angela Carter’s novel and will open Matthew Warchus’ fourth Season (2018/2019) as Artistic Director of The Old Vic, with a second production to follow.

Created and led by Emma Rice, Wise Children will become an Arts Council, National Portfolio Organisation for 2018-22, they will be based in the South West and have national significance. The Old Vic, London’s independent, not-for-profit theatre, celebrates its bicentenary in 2018. The theatre was the birthplace of Sadler’s Wells, English National Opera, the Royal Ballet and the National Theatre and will now be the first home to the Wise Children.

Wise Children will conceive, create and present world-class, innovative ensemble theatre; a culmination of the process and ethos Emma has developed over her theatrical career. Her bold, imaginative productions and gift for celebratory storytelling have made her one of the most important and acclaimed directors working today. Wise Children will work in partnership with venues to create ensemble work to tour nationally and internationally. Through a series of residencies, the company will develop and diversify audiences. The company will create a training and apprenticeship scheme, ‘Emma Rice’s School for Wise Children’. The scheme aims to develop skills across the sector, training independent artists and diversifying the creative workforce.

Matthew Warchus says: “In 2018 The Old Vic celebrates 200 years of independent, creatively adventurous theatre. I am thrilled to welcome Emma and her new company, Wise Children, as our Company in Residence for the bicentenary. Emma and all she stands for is symbolic of the optimism and irrepressible spirit that has kept The Old Vic at the forefront of artistic adventure for the last two centuries.”

Emma Rice says: “I named my new company Wise Children after Angela Carter’s seminal novel, which is set in South London and is a love letter to theatre. It makes total narrative and thrilling sense to start the Wise Children journey at The Old Vic! This iconic, independent and proudly innovative theatre has hosted Shakespeare and Variety, music and dance alike for almost 200 years and it is the perfect first home for my company and for our first production. It will come as no surprise that this first production will be an adaptation of the novel, Wise Children – “What a joy it is to dance and sing!”. I am following in extraordinary footsteps and grateful to Matthew Warchus and his team for welcoming Wise Children with such brave and open arms.”

Emma Rice’s new company, Wise Children, backed by Arts Council

Wise Children
Wise Children

Wise Children

A new company created and led by Emma Rice, Wise Children, has been awarded funding by the Arts Council South West, becoming one of their National Portfolio Organisations from April 2018.

Based in the South West of England, the company marks a new chapter for Emma Rice. Wise Children will conceive, create and present world-class, innovative ensemble theatre; a culmination of the process and ethos she has developed over her theatrical career. Emma has worked for twenty years as an actor, director and Artistic Director at Kneehigh and steps down from her current position as Artistic Director of Shakespeare’s Globe in April 2018. Her bold, imaginative productions and gift for storytelling have made her one of the most important and acclaimed directors working today.

Wise Children will work in partnership with venues to create ensemble work to tour nationally and internationally. Through a series of residencies, the company will develop and diversify audiences. Key partnerships are secured and will be announced in due course.

The company will create a training and apprenticeship scheme, ‘Emma Rice’s School for Wise Children’. The scheme aims to develop skills across the sector, training independent artists and diversifying the creative workforce. The training will be structured around intensive modules, with Emma drawing from the many excellent and established artists she has worked with over the years to support the next generation of practitioners.

Emma Rice said: “I am delighted that the Arts Council South West have chosen to support Wise Children. Anyone starting up a new theatre company in the current climate struggles against the odds to get started, and the Arts Council have given us a much-needed chance to begin our journey. I look forward to growing Wise Children to become the inclusive, passionate and imaginative company I know it will be. We will nurture and support diverse new voices and talent, bringing them together with the most brilliant and creative established artists and practitioners in the industry. This is a movement with a commitment to the generous exchange of skills, humanity and ideas at its heart. We are looking forward to welcoming everyone to share in our journey and to celebrate the power of theatre and all the curiosity, bravery and freedom it brings.”

Phil Gibby, Area Director, South West, Arts Council England, said: “We are delighted to be welcoming Wise Children into the National Portfolio. Emma Rice has an exceptional reputation for artistic and directorial leadership, it’s fantastic that she will be basing her new theatre company in the South West. We’re excited by the creative opportunities that will come through this investment, giving more people in more places across the country the opportunity to benefit from the wide benefits that arts and culture bring.”