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New and Noteworthy
Award winning star of TV and theatre, Catherine Tate and Dean John-Wilson will lead the cast in the new musical comedy Miss Atomic Bomb, alongside musical theatre stars Florence Andrews , Simon Lipkin and Daniel Boys as it explodes into the UK for its World Premiere at the St James Theatre, Victoria. The production will be running from 7 March for a strictly limited five week season.
Beyond the Fence at the Arts Theatre from 22 February - 5 March 2016. In a world becoming ever more technologically advanced, and reliant upon computers, machine learning and artificial intelligence are rapidly and fundamentally changing every aspect of human experience. But how does technology affect art and the creative process? In a world first, Sky Arts and Wingspan Theatricals will explore this question by presenting the premiere of the world's first 'computer musical'. Beyond the Fence Beyond the Fence is conceived by computer and substantially crafted by computer. It is modelled on a statistical study of the 'recipe for success' in hit musicals. This ground-breaking process is being filmed for a Sky Arts TV series titled 'Computer Says Show', chronicling this unique experiment (to be broadcast in spring 2016). In collaboration with leading experts in music, computation and the science of human creativity, composer Benjamin Till and his husband, writer and actor, Nathan Taylor, the award winning team behind 'Our Gay Wedding: The Musical' (Channel 4), will bring a whole range of computer-generated material to life, presiding over the creation of an emotionally powerful and exciting West End show which is at the same time the grandest of experiments. The show is directed by Luke Sheppard, choreographed by Cressida Carre and produced by Neil Laidlaw.
John Steinbeck took the title of Of Mice and Men from the Robert Burns poem 'To A Mouse'. Burns suggests we are all at the mercy of random events and the differences that make us who we are. Whether we are small, tall, male, female, young or old, we have little or no control over our lives. Steinbeck's story stays true to the same themes, with a strong moral message about people who experience loneliness or vulnerability. As a new production of Of Mice and Men tours theatres across the country, TheatreCloud.com has launched a major writing competition asking people to write a poem or duologue about loneliness. The Loneliness Project concludes on 14 May 2016, when a panel of judges will determine the winning submissions.
Christina Cole, Jennifer Mudge and Lloyd Owen will join the internationally acclaimed actor Matthew Perry to complete the cast in the World Premiere of his playwriting debut, The End of Longing, at the Playhouse Theatre, London, from 2 February - 14 May 2016. Design is by the 2015 Evening Standard and Critics' Circle award-winner, Anna Fleischle (Hangmen), with lighting by Lucy Carter and composition and sound by Isobel Waller-Bridge. This fast paced, and bittersweet comic new play, will be directed by the critically acclaimed and award-winning director, Lindsay Posner reuniting the pair, following their first West End collaboration on Sexual Perversity in Chicago at the Comedy Theatre in 2003.
Wicked, the classic West End musical that tells the incredible untold story of the Witches of Oz, announces its first ever Autism-Friendly performance on Saturday 14 May 2016 at 1:30pm. The production is working closely with the National Autistic Society, the UK's leading charity for people on the autism spectrum and their families, to create a friendly and supportive environment in which to enjoy the show. The specially adapted performance is suitable for people with autism, with trained staff on hand in dedicated quiet and activity areas should anyone need to leave their seats.
Producers Robert Fox, Matthew Byam Shaw for Playful Productions and Royal Court Theatre Productions have revealed that Matthew Dunster's production of Martin McDonagh's Hangmen has recouped in under six weeks. The news came as the production announced the winner of the Critic's Circle 'Best New Play' and 'Best Design' Awards. Following a sell out run at the Royal Court Theatre, Hangmen transferred to Wynhams it must end on 5 March 2016.
Following last year's phenomenal success of The Father by Florian Zeller (Theatre Royal Bath, Tricycle Theatre, Wyndham's and returning to the Duke of York's from February), and Critics' Circle Best Actor to Kenneth Cranham, the Menier Chocolate Factory in association with Theatre Royal Bath presents the UK première of Zeller's biting new play The Truth from 10 March.
James Roose-Evans who established the Hampstead Theatre and wrote the play 84 Charing Cross Road, now heads the Frontier Theatre established to redress his belief that many actors in their 60s, 70s and 80s "become invisible". As well as productions and readings the company will offer workshops led by figures including former Orange Tree artistic director Sam Walters and playwright Ray Cooney, who's a patron. Patrons besides Dench, McKellen, include Vanessa Redgrave and Mike Leigh. Frontier is headquartered at 6 Frederick's Place in east London, in a building that includes a 60-seat studio theatre.The first season will include productions of Beckett's Come and Go, Spring and Winter by Susan Hill and two Strindberg plays.
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