Photo Flash: In Rehearsal For AS YOU LIKE IT at Queen's Theatre Hornchurch

Following triumphant performances of Pericles at the National Theatre in summer 2018, the next Public Acts production of As You Like It is currently in rehearsals and will play from 24 - 27 August. Queen's Theatre Hornchurch's Artistic Director, Douglas Rintoul will direct this musical adaptation of the William Shakespeare classic.

With the full company now in rehearsal, over 100 performers are getting to grips with this incredibly ambitious and joyous production.

Speaking in rehearsals, Douglas Rintoul, Director of this production said, 'This is possibly one of the most life-affirming rehearsal processes I have been part of. The room is full of joy, openness and commitment, not only in the making of the show but also towards each other. This experience of creating As You Like It and the audience's experience of watching it will be one that will stay with all of us for a long time. It's a special project for the company, the audiences and for the Queen's Theatre Hornchurch.'

Emily Lim, Director of Public Acts, said, 'It's hard to believe we're already half way through rehearsals! It's been so special to see the show start to take shape. Our beautiful company are working so hard with Doug and his brilliant team - the room is full of love, full of learning, full of joy. We're so proud of everyone's amazing work so far and can't wait to see it continue to grow and evolve as we move into our last few weeks."

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. The 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 of professional actors include Beth Hinton-Lever (Hadestown, National Theatre), Linford Johnson (The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, Park Theatre), Ebony Jonelle (Top Girls, National Theatre), Rohan Reckord (The Rat Pack, The Savoy) and Vedi Roy (Laila The Musical tour, Rifco Theatre Company/Watford Palace).The production will also feature three cameo groups - Dhol Academy, The CommUnity Gospel Choir and The London School of Lucha Libre - who represent the cultural breadth of the city.

As You Like It is the second Public Acts production, the National Theatre's new initiative to create extraordinary acts of theatre and community. The production forms part of a two year partnership with community organisations who deliver visionary work in their communities, together with theatre partner Queen's Theatre Hornchurch.

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 the Queen's Theatre's 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 and assistant director Jules Tipton. The score is infectious, with sounds ranging from calypso to pop, Broadway musical to soul. Live captioning and live 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, & Mrs A Mosawi, Simon & Sue Ruddick and Garfield Weston Foundation.

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

For more information about As You Like It visit queens-theatre.co.uk

Photo Credit: Camilla Greenwell

Photo Flash: In Rehearsal For AS YOU LIKE IT at Queen's Theatre Hornchurch
Beth Hinton-Lever and company

Photo Flash: In Rehearsal For AS YOU LIKE IT at Queen's Theatre Hornchurch
Company

Photo Flash: In Rehearsal For AS YOU LIKE IT at Queen's Theatre Hornchurch
Company

Photo Flash: In Rehearsal For AS YOU LIKE IT at Queen's Theatre Hornchurch
Company

Photo Flash: In Rehearsal For AS YOU LIKE IT at Queen's Theatre Hornchurch
Company



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