West End Bares Returns

West End Bares Returns

After last year’s two sold-out shows, WEST END BARES, theatre’s hottest annual fundraiser, is returning on Sunday 29 October 2017 to The Novello Theatre at 7pm and 9.30pm in aid of the Make A Difference Trust.

Tickets are now on sale with an Early Bird offer of 20% off the top three ticket prices available for one week only, until Sunday 21 May.

This year’s theme and celebrity guests will be announced in the summer. Previous celebrity supporters have included Eddie Izzard, Dame Judi Dench, Michelle Visage, Samantha Bond, Graham Norton, John Barrowman, Ramin Karimloo, Bianca Del Rio, Joe Lycett and Beverley Knight.

The event is based on the original concept ‘Broadway Bares’ by legendary Broadway and West End director and choreographer Jerry Mitchell to benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights Aids.

See highlights from last year here

The Make A Difference Trust is a UK based charity with a vision of a world free from HIV and AIDS. Building on the legacy of 25 years of fundraising by the Theatre industry, they continue to make the vision a reality having distributed over £1.6million in grants to support individuals experiencing hardship across the UK as well as over £1million to support projects with their UK and international partners. For further information about the Make A Difference Trust please visit www.madtrust.org.uk

Tickets for WEST END BARES are on sale from Monday 15 May at 2.00pm and are priced at £15 – £100. Early Bird tickets are available from Monday 15 May to Sunday 21 May with 20% off the top three ticket prices.

Tickets are available from www.delfontmackintosh.co.uk or the DMT WEST END BARES booking line 0844 482 5172 and in person at the Novello Theatre Box Office. Booking fees apply and calls to Delfont Mackintosh Theatres 0844 numbers cost 7 pence per minute plus your phone company’s access charge.

West End Bares are proud to be partnering with 100 Wardour St for this year’s exclusive After Party where you can continue to celebrate with the cast of the show. Tickets cost £10 and are only available when you buy a ticket for the 7pm or 9.30pm show.  Once again, there is limited availability for the After Party and when the tickets are gone, they’re gone – so don’t miss out!100 Wardour St is split between a laid-back Bar & Lounge and chic Restaurant & Club, offering great food from midday right through until 2am with classic and contemporary cocktails. As befits the venues history as the site of London’s iconic Marquee Club where artists like David Bowie and The Rolling Stones performed, there are DJ’s and live music five nights a week.

Natalie Dormer to star in Venus in Fur

Natalie Dormer to star in Venus in Fur

TRH Productions will present Natalie Dormer and David Oakes in the West End premiere of David Ives’ hit Broadway play Venus in Fur this autumn for a strictly limited nine-week engagement at the Theatre Royal Haymarket. This critically-acclaimed two-hander will run from 6 October to 9 December with opening night for press on 17 October.

Tickets are on sale now from £15
www.trh.co.uk / 020 7930 8800

Enigmatic actress Vanda Jordan appears unannounced for an audition with director Thomas Novachek. She’s determined to land the leading role in his new production – despite seeming wrong for the part. Over one evening in downtown Manhattan, their charged meeting becomes a seductive dance to the end.

Directed by Patrick Marber, designed by Rob Howell with lighting by Hugh Vanstone and casting by Executive Producer Ilene Starger, Venus In Fur is an intoxicating dark comedy of desire, fantasy and the innate love of fur.

Natalie Dormer is to play Vanda Jordan. Dormer is known globally for film and television roles including Margaery Tyrell in HBO series Game of Thrones, Anne Boleyn in The Tudors for ShowtimeCressida in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Parts 1 and 2, Focus Features’ The Forest, Ron Howard’s Rush, and Ridley Scott’s The Counselor.  Upcoming, Dormer stars opposite Sean Penn and Mel Gibson in The Professor and the Mad Man, and the independent thriller In Darkness, which she also co-wrote. She is currently in production on FremantleMedia’s Picnic at Hanging Rock in Australia. Venus in Fur sees Dormer reunite with Patrick Marber, who wrote After Miss Julie (Young Vic) for which she received widespread critical acclaim in the title role. Her other stage credits include Sweet Nothings (also at the Young Vic) and .45 (Hampstead Theatre).

David Oakes is to play Thomas Novachek. Oakes is best known for portraying Juan Borgia in the Emmy Award-winning Showtime Original series The Borgias, for playing William Hamleigh in Emmy Award-winning mini-series The Pillars of the Earth, for BBC’s The White Queen in the role of George, Duke of Clarence and, most recently, on screen as Prince Ernest in ITV’s Victoria, for which he is currently filming the second series. Stage credits include Kit Marlowe in Shakespeare In Love (Nöel Coward Theatre) and Mr Darcy in Pride and Prejudice (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre). Oakes will also appear in the film adaptation of Albert Sánchez Piñol’s thriller Cold Skin set for release later this year.

Patrick Marber is an award-winning playwright, screenwriter, actor and director. His productions of his own work includes Dealer’s Choice (NT & Vaudeville), After Miss Julie (BBC TV), Closer (NT, Lyric & Music Box NY) Howard Katz (NT), Three Days in the Country (NT) Don Juan in Soho (Wyndhams). His other directing credits include Travesties (Menier Chocolate Factory/ Apollo Theatre) The Caretaker (Comedy Theatre), Blue Remembered Hills  (National Theatre), ‘1953’ (Almeida) and The Old Neighborhood (Royal Court Theatre). Other plays include The Red Lion, The Musicians, The School Film (all for NT) and Hoop Lane (BBC Radio 3). His film credits include Closer (directed by Mike Nichols), Notes on a Scandal (directed by Richard Eyre), Old Street and Love You More. For television his co-writing credits include The Day Today and Knowing Me, Knowing You With Alan Partridge.  More recently Ivo van Hove directed Marber’s version of Ibsen’s Hedda Gabler for the National Theatre starring Ruth Wilson. His plays have won Evening Standard, Olivier, Time Out, New York and London Critics’ Circle and Writers’ Guild Awards. His TV work has received BAFTA, British Comedy and Royal Television Society Awards. His screenplays have been nominated for Golden Globe, BAFTA and Academy Awards. He received the British Independent Film Award for Notes on a Scandal.

David Ives was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Play for Venus In Fur, which has been produced all over the country and the world, and was turned into a film by Roman Polanski. He is also well known for his evenings of one-act comedies All In The Timing and Time Flies. Other plays include New Jerusalem: The Interrogation of Baruch de Spinoza; The Liar (adapted from Corneille); The School For Lies (adapted from Molière); The Metromaniacs (adapted from Alexis Piron); Is He Dead? (adapted from Mark Twain); Ancient History, and Polish Joke. A Chicago native, he lives in New York City.

Rob Howell has worked extensively in costume and set design in theatre and opera within the UK and abroad including at the Royal Court, Almeida, Donmar Warehouse, National Theatre, Royal Shakespeare Company, Welsh National Opera, Royal Opera House and Metropolitan Opera, New York as well as at numerous other West End and Broadway Theatres. Recent credits include The Ferryman (Royal Court) and Groundhog Day (UK and Broadway). He has received three Olivier Awards and multiple nominations for Tony and Olivier Awards for both Set and Costume Design, including the Olivier Award for Best Set Designer for Troilus and Cressida, Vassa and Richard III in 2000 and for Hedda Gabler in 2006. He received an Olivier Award in 2012 and a Drama Desk Award, Outer Critics Circle Award, Tony Award in 2013 and for his designs for Matilda the Musical in New York and London.

Hugh Vanstone has designed the lighting for over 200 productions and worked extensively with UK national companies and on Broadway. He has received many awards including three Oliviers, a Tony and a Molière. As associate artist at The Old Vic, he has recently lit Art, No’s Knife, Groundhog Day (UK and Broadway), The Caretaker, The Master Builder and  Future Conditional. Other work includes: Dreamgirls (Savoy), Welcome Home, Captain Fox and  Closer (Donmar); The Red Lion (National Theatre, Dorfman); Closer (Donmar and in New York); An Act Of God (New York & tour); Matilda (RSC and internationally); Strictly Ballroom (Australian tour);  Don Quixote (Royal Ballet); Tanz Der Vampire (throughout Europe & Russia); Shrek The Musical (New York, West End & UK tour); Ghost (London and internationally).

Ilene Starger is a Casting Director and Producer. West End theatre credits include The Libertine (as Casting Director/Executive Producer for TRB and TRH); Breakfast at Tiffany’s (as U.S. Casting Director for 2009 TRH production; also for 2016 UK tour.) Broadway credits include Waiting for Godot, No Man’s Land, Breakfast at Tiffany’s (Casting Director & Associate Producer), Marlene, The Elephant Man, Dance of Death, The Diary of Anne Frank, Dirty Blonde, Closer (Artios Award.) Film credits include Custody (also Associate Producer), The Rewrite, Pink Panther 1 & 2, Music and Lyrics, Two Weeks’ Notice, Night at the Museum (Artios Award), School of Rock (Artios Award), Sleepy Hollow, A Simple Plan, The Parent Trap, First Wives’ Club, Marvin’s Room, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, No Way Out. TV credits include: Witness to the Mob, The Great Gatsby, Earthly Possessions. Starger is a former VP of Casting for Walt Disney and Touchstone Pictures.

An adaptation of Leopold von Sacher-Masoch’s 1870 novel Venus in Furs that inspired the term masochism, Venus in Fur was first performed off-Broadway, New York in 2010 with Nina Arianda and Wes Bentley, before transferring to the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre on Broadway with Nina Arianda reprising the role of Vanda Jordan alongside Hugh Dancy as Thomas Novachek. Both productions were directed by Walter Bobbie and won Arianda multiple awards including the 2011/12 Tony Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play. In 2012, Roman Polanski directed a film version of the play, in French, starring Emmanuelle Seigner and Mathieu Amalric.

And Here I Am to tour UK

And Here I Am to tour UK

Following the earliest footsteps of life through a warzone, And Here I Am is a coming-of-age story that witnesses the comedic absurdities of growing up in one of the world’s most troubled conflict zones. A world away from headlines and news bulletins, And Here I Am charts the intimate truths of Ahmed Tobasi’s personal odyssey. From his birth in a Palestinian refugee camp; to unwittingly escaping invading soldiers by playing hide and seek; And Here I Am is a tale of everyday human experiences against a backdrop of inhumane circumstances.

Combining fact and fantasy, tragedy and comedy, spanning both the first and second Palestinian Intifadas, And Here I Am follows Tobasi through his transformation from armed resistance fighter to artist; his journey as a refugee in the West Bank to Norway, and then back again.

In a series of tragicomic episodes vividly brought to life by award winning writer Hassan Abdlrazzak, And Here I Am is directed by Zoe Lafferty, whose directing credits include Queens of Syria (Young Vic/New London Theatre/West Yorkshire Playhouse/Everyman, Liverpool).

 

“A raw yet artful reminder of our common humanity… graceful, painful, unsentimental”

★★★★★ The Times (Queens of Syria)

 

Born in Jenin refugee camp during the first Intifada, Tobasi’s childhood was overshadowed by the Israeli occupation. After joining the armed resistance at the age of 17, Tobasi was shot during the ruthless invasion of his camp that saw friends and family murdered, and his home razed to the ground. After being arrested and incarcerated for four years in an Israeli desert prison, Tobasi eschewed pressure to return to armed resistance.

Instead he opted to continue fighting with art, leading him to political asylum in Norway whilst studying at the prestigious Nordic Black Theatre. In 2013 he returned to Jenin Refugee Camp, and to The Freedom Theatre, contributing to the local artistic movement which focused on using culture as a form of resistance. 

Developing Artists is a registered charity working to support the arts in conflict nations and marginalised communities. The development of the project has been supported by The Shubbak Festival, Nordic Black Theatre, The British Council, Fritt Ord, The Freedom Theatre, Jenin Refugee Camp, Al Qattan Foundation and The Arab Fund For Arts and Culture.

UK TOUR DATES

Tue 27 – Wed 28 June

01242 572573

Cheltenham, The Everyman Theatre                                                                       everymantheatre.org.uk

 

Fri 30 Jun – Sat 1 July

023 8067 1771

Southampton, The Nuffield Theatre       

nstheatres.co.uk

 

Thu 3 – Sat 8 July

020 7503 1646

London, Arcola Theatre (Shubbak Festival)   

arcolatheatre.com

 

Mon 10 – Tue 11 July

0843 208 6000

Salford, The Lowry (Shubbak Festival)          

thelowry.com

 

Wed 12 July

0151 709 4988

Liverpool, The Unity Theatre (Shubbak Festival)     

unitytheatreliverpool.co.uk

 

Fri 14 – Sat 15 July

01392 434169

Exeter, The Bike Shed Theatre (Part of the Boat Shed Festival)   

bikeshedtheatre.co.uk

 

Mon 17 – Tue 18 July

0131 220 4348

Edinburgh, Assembly Rooms     

assemblyroomsedinburgh.co.uk

 

Wed 19 July

01865 319450

Oxford, The North Wall    

thenorthwall.com

 

Thu 20 & Fri 21 July

01223 300085

Cambridge, ADC Theatre    

adctheatre.com

 

Sat 22 July

0300 3033 211

Halesworth, The Cut Arts Centre  

newcut.org

 

Casting announced for Bush Theatre’s Hir

Casting announced for Bush Theatre’s Hir

Casting is announced today for the UK premiere of Hir, written by Taylor Mac (24-Decade History of Popular Music) and directed by Nadia Fall (Disgraced). Arthur Darvill (Doctor Who, Broadchurch, Once) will play Isaac, Griffyn Gilligan (Teddy Ferrara) plays younger sibling Max, Ashley McGuire (Shopping and F***ing, The Suicide) will play their mom Paige and Andy Williams (The 39 Steps, War Horse) plays her husband Arnold.

After winning acclaim in New York, this play from one of America’s most dynamic and distinctive voices comes to London in a new production. Pulitzer Prize finalist Taylor Mac is a multi-award-winning writer and performance artist at the forefront of alternative responses to American culture. Author of seventeen full-length plays, Mac won rave reviews for the extraordinary 24 hour durational concert, A 24-Decade History of Popular Music, which reframed and re-enacted 240 years of US history (an extract was performed at LIFT Festival 2016).  In Hir, Mac tears apart the kitchen sink genre by challenging gender expectations and subverting all notions of the typical American family.

“Stop behaving like a man!” 
“We are men

Isaac gets home from serving in the marines to find war has broken out back home. Fed up with her broken American Dream, mom Paige has stopped washing, cleaning and caring for their ailing father. Once the breadwinner, dad Arnold has suffered a stroke and toppled from the head of the household to a mere puppet in the new regime. Ally to their mother is Isaac’s sibling Max. Only last time Isaac checked, Max was Maxine.

In Central Valley, in a cheap house made of plywood and glue, notions of masculinity and femininity become weapons with which to defeat the old order. But in Taylor Mac’s sly, subversive comedy, annihilating the past doesn’t always free you from it.

Hir is written by Taylor Mac, directed by Nadia Fall and designed by Ben Stones. Lighting design is by Eliott Griggs with sound design by Elena Peña. Fight direction is by Rachel Bown-Williams and Ruth Cooper-Brown of RC-Annie Ltd.

Dame Judi Dench to be first guest of Under the Orange Tree

Dame Judi Dench will take to the Orange Tree stage for the first of a new series of talks with our most distinguished actors about people they’ve worked with, admired and learned from. A celebration of British theatre’s history and its especially collaborative nature, it will be a unrivalled opportunity to see great artists talk up-close in the Orange Tree’s unique in the round space, in conversation with OT Ambassador Gyles Brandreth.

 

Funds raised by the Under the Orange Treeseries will go to support the Theatre’s work: from re-discovered plays, to developing new work, to introducing primary school children to Shakespeare for the first time, all aspects of the Orange Tree’s work are created with quality, variety and intimacy at their heart. 

 

Gyles Brandreth: “Judi Dench has been a heroine of mine since I first saw her playing Juliet in Franco Zeffirelli’s famous production of Romeo & Juliet at the Old Vic in 1960.  All these years later, I’m excited to be talking to her about some of her theatrical heroes and heroines.”

Tickets are £100 and available online only from midday Tuesday 9 May.

Guests for future talks to be announced.

Girls to make its Edinburgh Festival premiere

Girls to make its Edinburgh Festival premiere

Girls, the funny and fiercely passionate play by award-winning playwright Theresa Ikoko will make its Edinburgh Festival premiere in 2017. Telling the tale of three young friends who are kidnapped in Nigeria, Girls examines the stories behind the headlines that quickly become yesterday’s news.

 

“Why is everyone so bloody obsessed with hashtags?

Can you use it to shoot your way out of here?”

Three everyday girls, three best friends forever and three big issues: love, sex, religion. But when they’re kidnapped from home, their world is turned upside down. Hope and despair blur, jokes and fights become one, and the only hashtag that now matters is survival. Girls is a play about enduring friendship, the power of imagination and how the West often turns a blind eye to the stories behind headlines.

Theresa Ikoko wrote Girls when she became curious about the girls in the headlines, as well as those that are left unnoticed. With a background in criminology, Theresa works with gangs and serious youth violence offenders in the community, plus young women affected by gang and serious youth violence.

Theresa is a Talawa Writers’ Programme Playwright and continues to work closely with both HighTide and Soho Theatre.

Directed by Elayce Ismail (The Rise and Shine of Comrade Fiasco, Gate Theatre; Iphigenia Quartet: Chorus, Gate Theatre; Nanjing, The Yard), Girls won critical acclaim in its opening performances at London’s Soho Theatre, the Birmingham Rep and HighTide Festival in 2016. Girls follows Theresa’s debut play Normal, which was part of Talawa Firsts in 2014 and staged at HighTide Festival in 2015.

 

Girls was the joint winner of the George Devine Award (2016), the Alfred Fagon Award (2015), and was shortlisted for Soho Theatre’s Verity Bargate Award (2015).

Images released of new Aladdin Matthew Croke in costume

Images released of new Aladdin Matthew Croke in costume

Disney Theatrical Productions has released an exclusive first look at Matthew Croke as the title role in Aladdin ahead of his first performance in the title role on 5 June 2017 at the Prince Edward Theatre.

A behind-the-scenes video of Matthew’s very first Aladdin transformation and photo shoot is also available now. The new musical based on the classic Academy Award®-winning animated film will have its first birthday in the West End on 15 June, with Jade Ewen and Trevor Dion Nicholas continuing in the roles of Jasmine and Genie respectively.

The role of Aladdin will be Matthew Croke’s debut in a leading role in the West End. Originally from Sheffield, Matthew has previously starred in Annie Get Your Gun (Crucible Theatre), Singin’ in the Rain (UK Tour), Funny Girl (Menier Chocolate Factory), Shall We Dance (Sadler’s Wells), A Chorus Line (Crucible Theatre) and West Side Story (UK & Ireland tour). He has also performed and understudied the roles of Amos Hart & Mary Sunshine in Chicago (Cambridge Theatre), Eugene in Grease (Piccadilly Theatre), Don in Singin’ in the Rain (Palace Theatre) and Fiyero in Wicked (Apollo Victoria).

As previously announced, Nick Cavaliere will join the company to play the role of Iago, whilst current cast members Miles Barrow, Leon Craig and Daniel de Bourg will step into the roles of Omar, Babkak and Kassim respectively. Don Gallagher and Irvine Iqbal will continue in their respective roles of Jafar and the Sultan.

The new cast also includes Chanelle Anthony, Danny Becker, Cindy Belliot, Filippo Coffano, Nolan Edwards, Sinead Kenny, Travis Kerry, Dann Kharsa, Tarisha Rommick, Joshua Steel, Monica Swayne, Damien Winchester and Niko Wirachman.

Danny Becker, Travis Kerry and Niko Wirachman join the production after entering international open auditions.

The remaining cast comprises Arran Anzani-Jones, Albey Brookes, Lauren Chia, Bianca Cordice, Cavin Cornwall, Melanie Elizabeth, Kade Ferraiolo, Antony Hewitt, Mitch Leow, Oliver Lidert, Ian Oswald, Kyle Seeley, Sadie-Jean Shirley, Ricardo Spriggs, Kayleigh Thadani and Jermaine Woods.

Disney’s hit new West End musical Aladdin opened to critical acclaim on 15 June 2016, having begun preview performances from 27 May 2016. The show continues to play to sell-out houses, breaking attendance records at its London home, the Prince Edward Theatre. Tickets are now on sale for performances up to and including 30 September 2017 for individuals and 10 February 2018 for group bookings. For further details please visit www.aladdinthemusical.co.uk

Now in its fourth record-breaking year on Broadway at the New Amsterdam Theatre, Aladdin’s global presence has grown to six productions on four continents, seen by  more than 4 million people to date.The show opened at Tokyo’s Dentsu Shiki Theatre Umi in May 2015, had its European premiere in December 2015 at the Stage Theatre Neue Flora, Hamburg, began performances in August 2016 in Australia and launches its North American tour next month in Chicago.

Aladdin features the timeless songs from the 1992 animated film as well as new music written by Tony®, Olivier© and eight-time Academy Award winner Alan Menken (Beauty and the Beast, Newsies, Little Shop Of Horrors). With lyrics from Olivier Award and two-time Oscar® winner Howard Ashman (Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid), three-time Tony and Olivier Award, three-time Oscar winner Tim Rice (Evita, Aida), and four-time Tony Award nominee Chad Beguelin (The Wedding Singer), and a book by Beguelin, Aladdin is directed and choreographed by Tony and Olivier Award winner Casey Nicholaw(The Book of Mormon).

Previous Disney stage productions in London have included Shakespeare in Love and the Olivier-winning productions of Beauty and the Beast, Mary Poppins and The Lion King, which is now playing its 18thyear in the West End.

Aladdin is designed by Olivier and seven-time Tony-winning scenic designer Bob Crowley, five-time Tony-winning lighting designer Natasha Katz, Olivier and two-time Tony-winning costume designer Gregg Barnes and sound designer Ken Travis. Casting is by Jill Green CDG.

The production team also includes illusion designer Jim Steinmeyer, hair designer Josh Marquette and makeup designer Milagros Medina-Cerdeira. The music team is headed by music supervisor and music director Michael Kosarin, who also created the vocal and incidental music arrangements, joined by orchestrator Danny Troob and dance music arranger Glen Kelly.

ALADDIN
Prince Edward Theatre
28 Old Compton St
London W1D 4HS

Box Office number: 0844 482 5151
www.aladdinthemusical.co.uk

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