The Alligator Club, the North West writers’ collective including some up-and-coming Liverpool talent, are collaborating with Bolton Octagon Theatre tonight for a special Midsummer show.
In keeping with the nature of the group, the Love Inn, which is being performed three times tonight at Smithills Hall in Bolton, is a result of an interesting experiment. Back in February, 35 professional playwrights from across the country were invited to spend the night at the Octagon Theatre Bolton to write, tell stories and generate new ideas. The overnight creative session was run in partnership with The Alligator Club.
It was the first of its kind and allowed playwrights to share ideas, stories and inspiring experiences. From that starting point, six professional playwrights were commissioned to develop The Love Inn.
Described as “a unique exploration of new writing in the North West”, the project has been curated by writer-producers Jennifer Tuckett ( joint winner, Old Vic New Voices Theatre 503 Award) and Amman Paul Singh Brar (Blackout, The Dukes Theatre Lancaster; BBC Writersroom 10),who worked alongside writers Hannah Rodger, Luke Bailey, Lee Sutton and Ian Winterton to develop the piece.
The performances will take place in a number of unusual places throughout Smithills Hall at 5.30pm, 7.30pm and 9.30pm tonight (June 21).
Elizabeth Newman, associate director and head of the new writing department at the Octagon Theatre, is directing piece. She said: “This has been a great opportunity for us to get to know more playwrights across the country. These initiatives also show our desire to give our audience more – an unconventional theatre experience in an exciting location. It is also a great opportunity for the Octagon Theatre Bolton to work alongside other theatres across from the North West to explore new writing across the region.”
Jennifer Tuckett, chair of The Alligator Club as well as co-curator of The Love Inn, said: “The Alligator Club is a year long investigation of new writing in the North West. We are delighted to work with the Octagon to respond to the challenge to create a special production to take place on Midsummer night as part of this investigation.”
The club’s previous works include 100 Seel Street, which took place in a Georgian house in Liverpool, and Blackout, set in and around Duke’s Theatre Lancaster.
Tickets are £8 (£6 concessions) and can be booked by calling the Octagon Box Office on 01204 520661 or at octagonbolton.co.uk.