Hip-Hop Children's Production of ROMEO AND JULIET Set to Premiere Next Year

Performances are set to run 2 March – 14 April 2024.

By: Sep. 27, 2023
Hip-Hop Children's Production of ROMEO AND JULIET Set to Premiere Next Year

A new hip-hop production of Romeo and Juliet, recommended for 9 – 12+ year olds, will play at the Polka Theatre next year. Performances are set to run 2 March – 14 April 2024.

Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare’s most famous story, will be re-told through rap, rhythms, and beautiful harmonies, in collaboration with Beats & Elements’ Conrad Murray and Lakeisha Lynch-Stevens - the makers behind ‘Frankenstein: How to make a Monster’, ‘Pied Piper the Hip Hop Family Musical’ and ‘High Rise eState of Mind’ alongside Kate Donnachie (‘Unexpected Twist’, ‘Pied Piper the Hip Hop Musical’) and Khai Shaw (‘Little Baby Jesus’, Orange Tree, ‘Much Ado About Nothing’, RSC). The collective will transpose the action to South London in a 60-minute version. 

Polka will also tour the show to schools in Merton and across local boroughs as part of a new pilot touring scheme, building on their commitment to offering accessible theatre to school children in the local area. 

Helen Matravers said, “Ahead of announcing our wider Spring/Summer 2024 season, I am delighted to be sharing some of Polka’s upcoming productions. Cementing Polka’s commitment to staging work that is empowering, memorable, inclusive and fun, I am thrilled that Polka are creating a brand new version of Romeo and Juliet with Beats & Elements – creating a rapped, harmonised and contemporary version recommended for students age 9-12+ which will also do a small schools tour in the areas local to Polka – a pilot touring programme which we hope to expand on further in future years.

We recognise that coming to Polka to see a show is a unique and special experience for school children, but that rising costs of travelling and staffing are creating further barriers to this, and we are committed to ensure that our productions remain accessible to as many children as possible. Alongside our hugely popular and important, but increasingly over-subscribed, Curtain Up! programme of 6,000 free schools’ tickets annually, we are looking to further expand the possible avenues for schools, particularly with children at secondary-transition age, to be able to access theatre. We are hopeful that by significantly reducing costs for schools to access theatre, that more and more children benefit, gain confidence and feel empowered by the work that Polka produces.”

Other shows just announced in the Spring season include:  Apples and Snakes’ interactive, hip-hop, eco block party show PLOT17 (31 Jan – 4 Feb) using spoken word, lyrics, visuals and live DJ-ing to explore taking care of the environment. You are the Sun from HurlyBurly (7 – 11 Feb) is a very first opera for babies and grownups that celebrates the magic of nature. While Krystal S Lowe’s Remarkable Rhythm (14 – 18 Feb) is a dance theatre show about two young people connecting for the very first time, navigating a way to communicate that is unique to only them – with integrated audio description throughout by the two dancers, combined with a visually clear physical storyline, this show is also accessible to both audiences who are blind or partially sighted and audiences who are D/deaf or hard of hearing.  The Littlest Yak (24 – 28 Jan) tells us it’s ok to be yourself and be different, adapted by LAStheatre from the book by Lu Fraser and Kate Hindley with puppets and catchy tunes to transport us to the heart of the Himalayas.

The season is presented alongside a wide range of classes, workshops and activities at the venue from sensory play and storytelling, to crafts, and even stand-up comedy – kids of all ages can enjoy weekly classes, one off workshops, drop in and half term activities in a creative and supportive space.

Helen continues, “We are over the moon to be welcoming so many exciting and pioneering visiting companies and artists as part of this season, ensuring Polka’s audiences are able to enjoy shows created all over the UK.  It’s such a wonderful, eclectic season packed with memorable pieces from so many different genres of performance for all Polka audiences and their families. We hope you take a leap with something new and bold this Spring!”

Tickets are on sale now via Click Here or call 020 8543 4888*

Polka Theatre is one of just a handful of dedicated children’s venues in the UK. Re-opening in 2021 after a major renovation, Polka continues to present a year-round programme of shows produced by Polka and from visiting companies. Polka also offers a full programme of creative learning activities for ages 0–12, with over 21,000 children taking part in the last year. Polka enjoys flexible rehearsal and workshop spaces along with two performance spaces: the Main Theatre has a 300-seat capacity, and the Adventure Theatre can seat up to 90 depending on the show format.

Polka is a community hub and vital resource, open 6 days per week, 50 weeks per year at a challenging time to be a sustainable public venue with step-free access, free-to-access play spaces and a cosy and welcoming café and shop.

BroadwayWorld Awards Voting


Photos: First Look at EVITA at Leicesters Curve Theatre Photo
Photos: First Look at EVITA at Leicester's Curve Theatre

Leicester’s Curve theatre has shared all new production photos for its new Made at Curve production of Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Evita, running 27 November 2023 to 13 January 2024. Check out the photos here!

Andrew Lloyd Webber Appeals to UK Government for Funding for Music in Secondary Schools Tr Photo
Andrew Lloyd Webber Appeals to UK Government for Funding for Music in Secondary Schools Trust

Andrew Lloyd Webber has written to Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer, calling for public funding for the foundation Music in Secondary Schools Trust, which helps students in disadvantaged schools to access to quality music education.


Richard Schoch explores what daily life would have been like in the Shakespeare household and how the buildings that surrounded him have become hotspots. He describes how the unassuming residence on Henley Street was turned into a museum in the 19th century, long after the deaths of its original inhabitants, cementing the turn in the playwright’s popularity after the snub of the 1700s. We go from an initial indifference shown to the places that moulded the Bard of Avon to the frenzy of fake relics (uncountable people owned a a sample of “Shakespeare’s chair” in Victorian times, so many that it was regularly swapped for a new one to distribute). The book is jam-packed with facts and dates, but it flows well and it’s easy to follow - a delectable piece of microhistory and the perfect stocking filler for those who dabble in bardolatry. 

Sharon Osbourne - CUT THE CRAP Adds Extra West End Dates Photo
Sharon Osbourne - CUT THE CRAP Adds Extra West End Dates

MORE MRS O! 'Sharon Osbourne - CUT THE CRAP' adds extra West End dates due to overwhelming demand. Extra performances announced with live and uncensored interviews with surprise VIP guests from Sharon Osbourne's career. Fortune Theatre, West End, Sunday 28 January at 3pm & 6pm.

More Hot Stories For You



Recommended For You