Park Theatre Announce Jul-Dec 2019 Season - ACTOR'S NIGHTMARE, THE SNOW QUEEN, and More!

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Park Theatre today announced their new July - December 2019 season. Featuring four World Premiere productions, two UK and London Premieres and a range of revivals from Broadway and the West End, the theatre also introduces a revised young person's membership scheme called Park Up.

Artistic Director Jez Bond says: "We're presenting a wealth of new writing talent this season, including the extraordinary work of Eugene O'Hare - whose two plays are both funny, dark and surprising - and balancing this with some well-known revivals, including the award winning Martha, Josie and the Chinese Elvis and a rare production of Lesley Storm's play Black Chiffon, written and first presented way ahead of its time in 1949. In another new initiative, planned annually, we'll be bringing a few choice selections from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival down to north London for a week of performances in September. We are excited to be offering a new, free membership for young people called Park Up which allows members to access a great range of benefits including; free professional development workshops, £10 tickets during the first week of performances, £5 rush tickets on selected shows, cafe bar discounts, cheap room hire and more. I look forward to continuing to welcome audiences through our doors over the coming year as we strive to present the best possible work on our stages, with accessible and affordable experiences for all."

The World Premiere of Whodunnit [Unrehearsed] opens the new Park200 season, as a host of guest actors including Gillian Anderson, John Bishop, Jim Broadbent, Simon Callow, Ronan Keating,

Damian Lewis, Joanna Lumley, Catherine Tate and Tim Vine take turns joining the ensemble cast of this murder mystery, with no rehearsals, script or direction: just a hidden earpiece for guidance. The life story of acclaimed historian Howard Zinn follows in Bianca Bagatourian's The Time Of Our Lies, sharing stories from his role as a bomber in WWII through to his post-war activism. Park Theatre's in-house produced The Weatherman, written by Eugene O'Hare, is a powerful black comedy-drama centered on two broke flatmates who become complicit in their landlord's dark business scheme. Based on a true story, Tracy-Ann Oberman stars as a single Jewish mother dealing with the repercussions of her criminal son in Evan Placey's Mother Of Him. Miriam Margolyes returns to Park Theatre in the World Premiere black comedy of Eugene O'Hare's Sydney & The Old Girl, following the mutually assured destruction of a mother and son after sharing the same shabby house for fifty years. From the team behind last year's Christmas hit Peter Pan, a new adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen's The Snow Queen closes the Park200 season, as Gerda embarks on an epic journey through the seasons to save her best friend.

The UK Premiere of The Actor's Nightmare by Tony Award-winning playwright Christopher Durang and starring Meaghan Martin commences the new Park90 season, in a surreal distortion of classic plays that celebrate and satirise the theatre industry. Based on a true story, Taz Skylar's Warheads asks what happens to youth when it's sent to war, as it follows the lives of young British soldiers returning home from the front line. Psychological thriller Black Chiffon by Lesley Storm follows the familial fallout when a wealthy, 20th century woman shoplifted in a moment of madness. Based on a 19th century true story from America, Kate Barton's thriller Fast explores the horrific consequences of 'Dr' Linda Hazzard, who advocated a fasting-based miracle cure that captivated and then devastated a nation. Olivia Olsen's Stray Dogs is based on the true life events of the Russian poet Anna Akhmatova, who was approached in 1940 to work for the Stalinist regime that had purged her husband and imprisoned her son. Concluding the Park90 season in December, Charlotte Jones' quirky and kinky comedy Martha, Josie And The Chinese Elvis offers an alternative 'adults only' Christmas treat about a dominatrix whose favourite client decides to throw her a birthday party.


15 July - 27 July 2019

Park Theatre present a special fundraising run of the World Premiere of

WHODUNNIT [UNREHEARSED]

Written & Directed by Jez Bond & Mark Cameron

Cast includes Lewis Bruniges, Natasha Cottriall, Candida Gubbins, Omar Ibrahim, Patrick Ryecart plus celebrity guests

Supported by Park Theatre's Producers' Circle

Times: Evenings Mon - Sat 7.30pm, Matinees Thu & Sat 3pm
Age guidance: 12+

An isolated manor, a storm brewing and a stranger at the door. The clichés flow as freely as the suspicious liquor in the library, but this murder mystery spoof has one hell of a twist.

Whodunnit [Unrehearsed] not only features the voices of Ian McKellen and Judi Dench but also a different celebrity in each performance stepping in as the Inspector without any rehearsal and without ever having seen the script.

Gargantuan guests - including Gillian Anderson, John Bishop, Jim Broadbent, Ronan Keating, Damian Lewis, Maureen Lipman, Joanna Lumley, Meera Syal, Catherine Tate, Ruby Wax and more - will have their lines fed to them live on stage via an earpiece as they attempt to crack the case, avoid the furniture and stagger their way to justice.

After the show hear from our celebrity in a 'behind the scenes' conversation, when it's your turn to do the interrogation. See the show here before it transfers to the Edinburgh Fringe.

You'll kill for a ticket!

All guest actors are kindly donating their time to support this special fundraising run, so every penny raised will go towards keeping Park Theatre inclusive and accessible for all. Line up subject to last minute change.

Presented in association with Avalon.

Whodunnit [Unrehearsed] will transfer to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe from 31 July - 26 August, with guests yet to be announced.

www.whodunnitunrehearsed.com


30 July -10 August 2019

How It Is Productions in association with Park Theatre present

THE TIME OF OUR LIES

Written by Bianca Bagatourian

Directed by Ché Walker

Composition by Gamal Chasten

Choreography by Maureen Fleming

Press Night: Thu 1 Aug, 7pm

Times: Evenings Mon - Sat 7.30pm, Matinees Thu & Sat 3pm
Age guidance: 12+

Audio described performance: Fri 9 Aug 7.30pm, touch tour 6pm

Howard Zinn was an American historian, professor and social activist, widely considered one of the most influential thinkers of the 20th century. His book, A People's History of the United States, has sold two million copies and become required reading in schools worldwide.

The Time Of Our Lies explores Zinn's personal history, including being a soldier who dropped bombs on Rouen, France in WWll. This fateful moment troubled him for the rest of his days and shaped the man who would become a moral compass for the United States in ways that are more relevant today than ever before.

This play features songs using Howard's own words, combined with first-person accounts of war from other soldiers, all juxtaposed against an incongruously beautiful backdrop of Butoh movement.

The Edinburgh Fringe Festival run was co-produced by Viggo Mortensen and sponsored by Eddie Vedder, Tom Shadyac, Myla Kabat-Zinn, Tim Robbins and was nominated for the Amnesty International Freedom of Expression Award in 2014.

The Time Of Our Lies is a battle cry for democracy, transparency and inclusion in our world - the play embodies Zinn's battle for social justice and his lifelong struggle against false historical narratives written by those in power that poison the well for true democracy.


15 August - 14 September 2019

Park Theatre in association with Anthology Theatre, Eilene Davidson and Featuristic Stage present the World Premiere of

THE WEATHERMAN

Written by Eugene O'Hare

Directed by Alice Hamilton

Cast includes: Mark Hadfield

Supported by Park Theatre's Producers' Circle

Press Night: Wed 21 Aug, 7pm

Times: Evenings Mon - Sat 7.30pm, Matinees Thu & Sat 3pm
Age guidance: 16+

Captioned: Tue 10 Sep 7.30pm

What if you're too skint to afford morals?

Beezer and O'Rourke live on the fringes of society in a dingy London flat, struggling to make ends meet. Despite living life at the bottom of the heap, the savage banter of their dysfunctional friendship keeps the pair afloat.

When their dodgy landlord, Dollar, makes them a 'business' proposition, O'Rourke finds himself selling out for the cost of a few months' rent. The price? Take care of a mystery special package. Just for a few months. Easy job. Easy money.

As the weight of a heavy conscience becomes too much to bear, the outlook for tomorrow becomes increasingly dark, with a storm brewing on the horizon.

O'Hare's first black comedy-drama in Park Theatre's 2019 season shines a light on complicity and its intriguing web of secrets and lies woven behind closed doors.

Please note this play contains distressing scenes and themes of abuse that may be triggering for some. Not suitable for children.


18 September - 26 October 2019

Jacob Thomas and Oliver Mackwood Productions in association with Park Theatre present

MOTHER OF HIM

Written by Evan Placey

Directed by Max Lindsay

Cast includes Tracy-Ann Oberman

Press Night: Tue 24 Sep, 7pm

Times: Evenings Mon - Sat 7.30pm, Matinees Thu & Sat 3pm
Age guidance: 16+

Audio described performance: Sat 12 Oct 3pm, Touch Tour 2pm

'You are what I have created. And this is what you've created. All that's left for you is an empty void.'

December. Toronto. It's cold.

Brenda, a single Jewish mother (Tracy-Ann Oberman, best known for EastEnders and the hit comedies Friday Night Dinner and Toast of London) sends her youngest son, Jason, off to school. His elder brother remains asleep upstairs. This could be a day like any other, if older brother Matthew wasn't under house arrest.

Pursued by the media and tormented by guilt, Brenda tries to hold her family together as the world is set to tear them apart.

Based on a true story, Evan Placey's powerful and provocative drama questions what it takes for a mother to stop loving her son.

Tracy-Ann Oberman, whose stage work ranges from Shakespeare with the RSC to Pinter in the West End, plays Brenda Kapowitz in this Award-winning play by Evan Placey. In addition to her impressive theatre credits, Tracy-Ann Oberman's extensive television credits include EastEnders, Doctor Who and Toast of London.

Director Max Lindsay makes his Park Theatre debut following his acclaimed 2018 production of Angry at Southwark Playhouse. From the producer of Park Theatre hits The Life I Lead, Pressure and Madame Rubinstein.


31 October - 30 November 2019

Park Theatre presents the World Premiere of

SYDNEY & THE OLD GIRL

Written by Eugene O'Hare

Directed by Phillip Breen

Cast includes Miriam Margolyes & Mark Hadfield

Supported by Park Theatre's Producers' Circle

Press Night: Tue 5 Nov, 7pm

Times: Evenings Mon - Sat 7.30pm, Matinees Thu & Sat 3pm (no matinee Thu 21 Nov)
Age guidance: 14+

Access performance: Audio Described Sat 16 Nov 3pm, touch tour 2pm

Miriam Margolyes returns to Park Theatre in the World Premiere black comedy Sydney & The Old Girl.

Nell and Sydney Stock are at war - and it's mutually assured destruction. After 50 years cooped up in the same shabby East London house, the points scored in never ending arguments continue to bind the pair together. And then, there is the not so simple matter of the inheritance...

As the twisted game between mother and son reaches breaking point, Irish care worker Marion Fee finds herself an unwitting pawn, played from both sides. Nell will stop at nothing for her bitter triumph over Sydney - but he has his own plans on how to end this once and for all.

Acerbic humour from O'Hare coupled with the inimitable Miriam Margolyes make Sydney & The Old Girl a production not to be missed.


4 December 2019 - 4 January 2020

Julie Clare Productions in association with Park Theatre present

THE SNOW QUEEN
By Charles Way

Adapted from the story by Hans Christian Andersen

Directed by Abigail Anderson

Press Night: Fri 6 Dec, 7pm

Times: Evenings Mon - Sat 7pm, Matinees 11am, 3pm and 5pm (see online for full schedule)
Age guidance: 5+

Access performance: Audio Described Fri 27 Dec 3pm, touch tour 2pm. Parent & Baby, Mon 30 Dec, 1pm

For everyone who loves Frozen, come and see how it all began as the original Snow Queen casts her magical spell over Park Theatre this Christmas!

Join Gerda on her epic journey through the seasons to save her best friend Cei before she loses him to endless Winter. With the help of bickering flowers, nasty teachers, snowball fights, confused Princes and Princesses and Bae the talking Reindeer, they might both be ready to grow up after all.

From the team who brought you 2018/19 family hit Peter Pan - Julie Clare Productions (with two Olivier award-winning shows to their name) are delighted to be joining forces with Park Theatre to bring you Charles Way's delightful adaptation of the Hans Christian Andersen classic.

The sparkling Snow Queen is beckoning young and old to this glittering spectacle.


16 July - 10 August 2019

3 hearts canvas and Over Here Theatre Company in association with Park Theatre present the UK Premiere of

THE ACTOR'S NIGHTMARE

Written by Christopher Durang

Directed by Lydia Parker

Designed by Anna Driftmier

Cast includes Meaghan Martin, Stefan Menaul & Kate Sumpter

Press Night: Fri 19 Jul, 7pm

Times: Evenings Mon - Sat 7.45pm, Matinees Thu & Sat 3.15pm
Age guidance: 12+

Access Performance: Dementia Friendly Mon 22 Jul 3.15pm, Relaxed Sat 27 Jul 3.15pm

Tell me, do you find me funny or do you find me disturbing?

Tony Award-winning playwright Christopher Durang explores the entertainment industry through biting satire and surreal comedy. At once a celebration of show business and a touching reflection on what it means to be an artist, we are offered snapshots of the eccentric and absurd.

From Tennessee Williams to Euripides, tossing in a bit of Beckett, no renowned playwright is safe. Classic plays are warped and distorted - the outcome is both shocking and hilarious.

With a female-led creative team and an ensemble cast featuring: Meaghan Martin (Camp Rock), Kate Sumpter (The Little Drummer Girl), andStefan Menaul (Dirty Dancing, West End), we journey through the ludicrous and lonely world of New York theatre, culminating in Durang's iconic finale: The Actor's Nightmare.

Especially curated by 3 hearts canvas into a cohesive, stand-alone piece, the production includes the UK Premiere of some of Durang's finest works: Mrs Sorken; Desire, Desire, Desire; Business Lunch at the Russian Tea Room; Woman Stand-Up; Medea and The Actor's Nightmare.


15 August - 7 September 2019

True Maverick Media and Park Theatre present

WARHEADS

Written by Taz Skylar & Ross Berkeley Simpson

With spoken word by Suli Breaks

Directed by Toby Clarke

Cast includes Jahannah James, Sarah Naudi and Taz Skylar

Press Night: Fri 16 Aug, 7pm

Times: Evenings Mon - Sat 7.45pm, Matinees Thu & Sat 3.15pm
Age guidance: 13+

Access performance: Captioned Thu 5 Sep 7.45pm

What happens to youth when it's sent to war?

Upon return from his first tour of Afghanistan, 19 year old Miles isn't quite himself. Noises don't sound the same. People don't look the same. Pizza doesn't taste the same.

The harder he tries to act normal, the harder it gets to be normal. And all his loved ones' attempts to help him just keep making things worse.

The play oscillates between multiple time lines. We get to see glimpses of the child that was Miles Weppler before he signed up for the army. The man he's become post war. We get an intimate view into what motivates a young man towards the military, and why he wants to stay in the military at any cost.

Through the eyes of his therapist he's just a lost boy. Through the eyes of his girlfriend he's a stubborn and sometimes scary man.

Through the eyes of his best friend, he's paranoid. And through the not-so-best friend's eyes, Weppler's just a dick.

Warheads is a punchy urban drama based on a true story.


18 September - 12 October 2019

Frinton Summer Theatre in association with Park Theatre present

BLACK CHIFFON

Written by Lesley Storm

Directed by Clive Brill

Press Night: Thu 19 Sep, 7pm

Times: Evenings Mon - Sat 7.45pm, Matinees Thu & Sat 3.15pm

Age guidance: 14+

Access performance: Dementia Friendly Mon 7 Oct 3.15pm


"Do you know Doctor... I've brought this awful trouble on my family... I'm deeply ashamed... But I still can't think of that moment without an appalling desire to laugh..."

Mrs Alicia Christie maintains a beautiful home, with a clever husband and devoted children. This surely makes her an upstanding society woman...

What would you do to protect your family? Would you lie? Would you pretend to be a completely different person to the one everyone knows? Would you forsake all your beliefs? Would you go to jail?

One woman. One crime. One decision.


15 October - 9 November 2019

Digital Drama Productions in association with Park Theatre present the London Premiere of

FAST

Written by Kate Barton

Directed by Kate Valentine

Cast includes Caroline Lawrie

Press Night: Wed 16 Oct, 7pm

Times: Evenings Mon - Sat 7.45pm, Matinees Thu & Sat 3.15pm
Age guidance: 14+

Access Performance: Captioned Thu 31 Oct 7.45pm

How far would you go to find the perfect cure?

In Wilderness Heights, an isolated region of the Pacific Northwest, 'Dr' Linda Hazzard opens her clinic to the public.

The public do not always survive...

In a chilling parallel to our modern world of influencers peddling protein shakes and diet pills, Fast is the true story of 'Dr' Linda Hazzard who advocated a fasting cure that gripped the press and divided a nation. Complex, beguiling and utterly driven, was Hazzard vilified as a woman in a man's world or were there darker forces at play?

Award-winning producer Digital Drama is delighted to bring Fast to Park Theatre after sell-out shows at the Brighton and Edinburgh Fringe.

Shortlisted for Best New Play Award 2018 by New Writing South.


13 November - 7 December 2019

Dead Letter Perfect in association with Park Theatre present the World Premiere of

STRAY DOGS

Written by Olivia Olsen

Directed by Robin Herford

Cast includes Olivia Olsen

Press Night: Friday 15 Nov, 7pm

Times: Evenings Mon - Sat 7.45pm, Matinees Thu & Sat 3.15pm
Age guidance: 12+

Access Performance: Captioned Thu 21 Nov 7.45pm

Russia. 1940. A land gripped by fear; where language is a weapon - where poetry is power.

Anna Akhmatova, the most celebrated poet of her generation, has lost her first husband to the purges and her son to state prison, where he awaits execution. Now, Stalin, the tyrant responsible for the murder of everyone close to her, wants a favour...

Plunged so far into obscurity she is believed to be dead, Anna is offered a renewal of life when the Russian/British philosopher Isaiah Berlin risks the hazards behind the iron curtain to find her. But in a world where poetry is a force that can control and move masses for good or ill, which side of the curtain will her loyalty lead her? How far will she go to save a life? How far will she go to save herself?

Based on true events, Stray Dogs depicts the story of one of the most extraordinary women of the 20th century, as she must choose between her duty to her son, her country, her art and herself. This urgent and relevant play explores the nature of tyranny and how it affects both the political landscape of the past and the present.


11 December 2019 - 4 January 2020

Signal Theatre Company in association with Park Theatre present

MARTHA, JOSIE AND THE CHINESE ELVIS

Written by Charlotte Jones

Directed by Robert Wolstenholme

Press Night: Fri 13 Dec, 7pm

Times: Evenings Mon - Sat 7.45pm, Matinees Thu & Sat 3.15pm
Age guidance: 16+

Access Performance: Captioned Thu 19 Dec 7.45pm, Audio Described Thu 2 Jan 3.15pm, touch tour 2pm

Josie's tired. Tired of the Bolton winter. Tired of looking after daydreaming daughter Brenda. Tired of working as a dominatrix to make ends meet. Too tired to celebrate turning forty.

But her favourite client Lionel insists on a birthday party and, knowing Josie's a huge Elvis fan, invites a very special guest. Just as hips start swinging, somebody no-one expected arrives and skeletons come tumbling out of the closet...

Writer of Humble Boy (National Theatre) Charlotte Jones' hilarious and heartfelt comedy about finding a place to fit in won the 1998 Pearson Best Play Award and, on its twenty-first anniversary, receives its first ever London production, from comedy specialists Signal Theatre Company.

Hilarious and heartfelt, and with a rocking Elvis soundtrack, Charlotte Jones' quirky, kinky comedy celebrates life's outsiders; sweet yet saucy, it's the perfect 'adults only' alternative Christmas treat.



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