Exeter Northcott Returns To Producing Original Work Made In The South West

Season includes three original Northcott productions: their beloved annual pantomime, and two brand-new shows.

By: Jun. 13, 2024
Exeter Northcott Returns To Producing Original Work Made In The South West
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South West artists and audiences are at the heart of Exeter Northcott's Autumn/Winter 2024 season, which includes three original Northcott productions: their beloved annual pantomime, and two brand-new shows. All three are rooted in Exeter and made for the people of the South West. Highlights of the Autumn/Winter season include: 

  • The Commotion Time: the world premiere of South-West playwright Sarah Dickenson's historical drama, a local story performed by a community ensemble and professional cast.
  • Cinderella: a family pantomime from Exeter Northcott and Devon-based Le Navet Bete, building on their year-on-year record-breaking success. 
  • The Elves and the Shoemaker: a classic fairytale retold by South-West favourites PaddleBoat Theatre, complete with clowning, puppetry and a miniature world no little one could resist. 
  • Elevate Festival: the centrepiece of Exeter Northcott's reimagined artist development programme, designed to nurture and showcase the theatremakers of tomorrow. 
  • Reclaim Festival: a week-long celebration of work by women, for women. 
  • Over 70 other events, offering something for everyone. 

Three Northcott Productions  Exeter Northcott's return to producing begins in October with the world premiere of The Commotion Time, also the first production to be directed for the theatre by its new Creative Director Martin Berry. It is the first play by Sarah Dickenson, a highly sought-after dramaturg who has worked with the RSC, Shakespeare's Globe, and The National Theatre. Set amid the tumultuous aftermath of Henry VIII's death, this female-led story gives voice to the ordinary communities who marched to Exeter in their thousands to force the authorities to listen. 

Martin Berry says:  “When I read Sarah's wonderful play, I knew the Northcott just had to do it. It is a story that says so much about this city, the community, and the plans we are making for the coming years at the Northcott.    

The Commotion Time is a South-West story, by a South-West writer, that speaks directly to the people of Exeter, Cornwall and beyond. Most importantly it is rooted firmly in community, in every sense. And if that isn't reason enough to buy your tickets, it is a brilliant and gripping drama, full of laughs, love, passion and murder. If you love period drama, live music, great acting and a proper night out at the theatre, then you'll love The Commotion Time.”  

Local theatremakers are also at the heart of the Northcott's festive season, with Exeter-based Le Navet Bete teaming up with the theatre once again to co-produce an original family pantomime, Cinderella. Last year's collaboration, Dick Whittington, is currently in the running for Best Pantomime (Under 500 Seats) at the Pantomime Awards.

The success continues with ticket sales for Cinderella already 53% higher than the same time last year.   The third Northcott production is The Elves and the Shoemaker, set to enchant younger children at the Barnfield Theatre in December. South-West favourites and Exeter University graduates PaddleBoat Theatre will bring their trademark energy to this age-old tale about working together.  

Elevate  Alongside their Autumn/Winter 2024 season, Exeter Northcott is thrilled to announce the launch of Elevate, a new artist development programme building on the legacy of Futures. 

Sam Parker, Artist Development Producer, says:  “The Northcott team are huge believers that the South-West is home to some of the country's most exciting artists, and that our organisation has a responsibility to support them in taking their next steps. Elevate has been designed with that in mind, featuring a range of opportunities for artists of all backgrounds and experience levels to engage with us. Watch this space for more information on how to get involved!” 

In October, Elevate Festival will transform the Barnfield Theatre into a vibrant hub for emerging artists. The week-long festival will include masterclasses, an evening of newly commissioned short plays, and scratch nights for works-in-progress. One local company will be offered a week-long residency, culminating in a sharing. 

Reclaim Festival  Reclaim Festival will follow hot on the heels of Elevate Festival, packing mid-November full of work by women, for women. The programme of panel discussions, workshops, comedy, open mic nights, music and more will immerse audiences into a patriarchy-smashing week of locally sourced female greatness, curated by Exeter-based producers Katy Danbury and Naomi Turner.  

Over 70 Other Events  The Northcott's Autumn/Winter 2024 season features over 70 other shows and events, spanning a huge range of genres, including dance, theatre, comedy, talks, music, opera and workshops, bringing the very best world-class arts and entertainment to Exeter.


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