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Pinecone Performance Lab to Present THE QUEEN IS MAD at The Lion and Unicorn Theatre

Performances will run 19-23 March.

By: Feb. 21, 2024
Pinecone Performance Lab to Present THE QUEEN IS MAD at The Lion and Unicorn Theatre  Image
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The Queen is Mad is a musical psychodrama inspired by the true story of "Joanna la Loca". The elder sister of Catherine of Aragon, Joanna inherited the throne of Castile in 1504 - but her father and husband conspired to usurp her power by claiming she was mad and locking her away. Against the brutality and fanaticism of 16th century Spain, the show charts Joanna's quest for freedom and control of her own life.

With shades of Passion, Wicked, and The Tudors, this chamber musical fuses a contemporary classical score with a tale of power, betrayal and rage.

The cast of three comprises Natasha Hoeberigs (The Voice Australia), Alan Vicary (The Phantom of the Opera - His Majesty's, Kinky Boots - Adelphi) and Brian Raftery (Sweeney Todd - Theatre Royal Stratford).

From 19-23 March, The Lion and Unicorn Theatre will host the premiere production of this new musical, as part of their 2024 Spring Season. The show has been in development since last summer, when a 30-minute concert reading was presented at the Toulouse Lautrec Jazz Club, as part of the Irish Creative Collective's Siamsa Variety Night.

On Thursday, 21 March, there will be a post-show discussion "Women, Power & Rage" with representatives from partner organisations working in domestic abuse and mental health. This will connect the historical story of Joanna with contemporary advocacy for women's rights. The discussion is open to all ticket holders.


Amy Clare Tasker (book & lyrics, director) is a theatre maker and musical theatre writer. She works with her own company Pinecone Performance Lab, and with The Cockpit, where she produces the Voila! Europe Theatre Festival and the Theatre Maker artist development programme. Amy has a BA in Drama from the University of California, Irvine. She is a member of the Book, Music & Lyrics workshop, Mercury Musical Developments, and Musical Theatre Network.

Previous credits with Pinecone Performance Lab include writing/performing HOT (Helen of Troy) (The Cockpit) and creating/directing Home Is Where (Rich Mix, Camden People's Theatre, Theatre Deli). Since moving to London from San Francisco in 2013, Amy's work has also been seen at Shoreditch Town Hall, artsdepot, LOST Theatre, Canal Cafe Theatre, Theatre Utopia, Toulouse Lautrec Jazz Club, and the Southbank Centre's Women of the World Festival.

Tom James McGrath (book, music & lyrics, musical director) is a composer-lyricist from Tipperary, Ireland. His musicals have been performed in the Etcetera Theatre (Camden Fringe), Smock Alley Theatre (Dublin) and on Irish national radio. He has an MPhil in contemporary composition from Trinity College, Dublin. When he's not writing musicals, Tom works part-time as an NHS doctor. He is a member of the Book, Music & Lyrics workshop.


Natasha Hoeberigs (Joanna)

Natasha's career has spanned across continents, having been featured as a contestant on The Voice Australia, a semi-finalist on Australia's Got Talent, and a solo artist on the Japanese hit series Nodojiman the World (のどじまんTHEワールド!). She can also be seen in the latest season of The Inside Man, and the thriller feature Path For The Sinners.

Theatre credits include: Ensemble/u/s Elphaba in Wicked (Packemin Productions, Australia), Annabel Glick in the London revival of Lucky Stiff (Union Theatre), Kate/u/s Laurey in Oklahoma! (Grange Park Opera), Marion in Priscilla Queen of the Desert: The Musical (NCL Creative Studios), Rizzo in Grease (Royal Caribbean International), Anita in West Side Story (Future Stages, Manchester), Ensemble in Disney's Aladdin (Disney Cruise Line).

Alan Vicary (Ferdinand)

Alan is from Perth, Scotland and has enjoyed a varied career in theatre as an actor and singer. He has performed in plays, musicals and concerts in the UK and internationally and has appeared in fourteen West End shows. Recent credits include Girl from the North Country (Gielgud), The Phantom of the Opera (His Majesty's) and Kinky Boots (Adelphi). Other highlights include King Lear (Chichester and New York) and The Crucible (The Old Vic). Most recently he played Dr. Winkel in The Third Man (Menier Chocolate Factory) directed by Sir Trevor Nunn.

Brian Raftery (Philip)

Hailing from County Galway in Ireland, Brian has been involved in music and theatre throughout his life. After completing a BMus in Piano in the CIT Cork School of Music in 2015 he moved to London to pursue Musical Theatre, completing his MA in the Royal Academy of Music in 2016. Credits include Tobias (Sweeney Todd; Theatre Royal Stratford), Joseph (Joseph & The Technicolour Dreamcoat - The Everyman Theatre, Cork), J. Pierrpont Finch (How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying - Curtis Auditorium, Cork) and Gordon Schwinn (A New Brain - Stack Theatre, Cork).


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