We love a Playhouse season launch, and this week saw the theatre announce three exciting new in-house productions for next year as well as the return of a few familiar faces.
They had previously spilled the beans about Roger McGough’s new adaptation of the Molière classic The Misanthrope, which will have its world première in Liverpool before a UK tour; so the big news was the Playhouse will host the European première of The Kite Runner, in a co-production with Nottingham Playhouse.
Finally, Stephen Unwin will direct A Day in the Death of Joe Egg which will open at the Playhouse before moving to the Rose Theatre, Kingston. Unwin founded English Touring Theatre, and succeeded Sir Peter Hall as the Rose’s second Artistic Director in 2008. A modern classic of British theatre, A Day in the Death of Joe Egg is about the love and the pain, the anger and the strain of a young couple raising a disabled child.
Artistic director Gemma Bodinetz said: “This season includes a rich variety of premières that will see our productions reach many audiences around the country as well as at home in Liverpool. We are tremendously excited about our collaborations with English Touring Theatre, Nottingham Playhouse and the Rose Theatre on some brave and courageous new work on the Playhouse main stage.”
The Kite Runner has been adapted for stage by Matthew Spangler from Khaled Hosseini’s international bestseller. An epic tale of Shakespearian proportions about two young boys from Kabul charts a friendship that spans cultures and continents, and follows one man’s journey to confront his past and find redemption. It arrives in Liverpool in June.
For kids, in 2013 Complicite, renowned for their ambitious visual designs, will present Lionboy – a stage adaptation inspired by Zizou Corder’s bestselling fantasy novels about a young boy who can talk to cats. Italian company Teatro Kismet, who were last at the Playhouse with The Snow Queen, have adapted celebrated children’s author Phillip Pullman’s I Was A Rat! for the stage.
Northern Ballet will tour a production of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling, and popular children’s character Spot the dog will also be on the Playhouse stage in May.
The Playhouse will also stage work on tour of the highest distinction in 2013. Sir Jonathan Miller returns to the British stage for the first time in five years to direct Northern Broadsides’s production of Githa Sowerby’s Rutherford and Son, while Northern Stage present Dennis Potter’s Blue Remembered Hills, directed by Psyche Stott.
Liverpool writer Jonathan Harvey, whose career began at the Playhouse 25 years ago, will see a revival of his celebrated play Beautiful Thing on the Playhouse’s main stage.
Phoenix Dance perform new show Particle Velocity, while there will be three one night comedy performances from Roger McGough, Mark Thomas with Bravo Figaro! and John Shuttleworth’s Out Of Our Sheds.
February 2013 will see the fifth production by Young Everyman Playhouse (YEP). This year the Young Writers will help create and devise a play with the Young Actors for a new production of site-specific theatre in a large scale venue in the city centre.
MADE UP is a blog that attempts to cram in as wide a variety of news, reviews and interviews on theatre happenings in Liverpool as possible.
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© Vicky Anderson 2013