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Christopher, fifteen years old, stands beside Mrs Shears' dead dog. It has been speared with a garden fork, it is seven minutes after midnight and Christopher is under suspicion. He records each fact in the book he is writing to solve the mystery of who murdered Wellington. I made a decision. I did this by thinking of all the things I could do and deciding whether they were the right decision or not. He has an extraordinary brain, exceptional at maths while ill-equipped to interpret everyday life. He has never ventured alone beyond the end of his road, he detests being touched and he distrusts strangers. But his detective work, forbidden by his father, takes him on a frightening journey that upturns his world. My name is Christopher John Francis Boone. I know all the countries of the world and the capital cities. And every prime number up to 7507.
This award-winning comedy is a love story between two elderly residents in a nursing home. Patrick was a mathematician and codebreaker, Clara is a beautiful innocent with a fading memory. Will their adult children be able to come to terms with their own feelings as the romance between their parents blossoms? Half Life explores the nature of memory and aging and the transformative power of love with humour and tenderness.
Ustinov Studio. Part of a Season of plays from North America
A classic Sherlock Holmes mystery set on a foggy and sinister moor. A beloved baronet lies murdered...Mysterious omens of doom are sent by unseen hands...An escaped psychopath brings reign of terror...A terrifying beast is glimpsed in the dead of night...
Time is running out for Restoration England's most notorious rake. The Earl of Rochester was the era's greatest unsung genius: also lover, a liar and pornographic poet. With only months left to live, he begins his final assault on life, blazing through the court of Charles II and London society, scorching all in his path.
Classical French comedy. Harpagon, the Miser, a capricious and unpredictable fool, attempts to ruin the lives of his family with the sole purpose of protecting his vast fortune. A fortune he has no intention of ever touching himself.
The inept and accident prone Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society embark on bringing an ambitious 1920's murder mystery (Murder at Haversham Manor) to The Edinburgh Festival. Chris the arrogant head of the drama society has directed the piece and cast himself as the dynamic Inspector. Desperate wannabe actress Sandra and the genuinely doting Max struggle opposite each other as the romantic interest while hapless Dennis still can't pronounce 'facade'. An hour of hilarious disaster ensues; actors get knocked out, the play gets stuck on a loop and the set falls down before the final denouement. The production ends with an uproarious, totally improvised Q&A session with the cast, where the audience can put their own questions to the unfortunate troupe.
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife... The ultimate romantic comedy, Jane Austen’s story of the five Bennet sisters and their relentless pursuit of suitable husbands is one of the best-loved novels ever written, constantly topping the polls of favourite books. When feisty Elizabeth Bennet first meets handsome bachelor Fitzwilliam Darcy, she thinks him arrogant and conceited. When she later discovers that he has scuppered the relationship between his friend Bingley and her beloved sister Jane, she is determined to dislike him more than ever. In the sparkling comedy of manners that follows, the family’s lives are turned upside down as Jane Austen shows the folly of judging by first impressions and pokes gentle fun at the affectations and etiquette of provincial middle-class life.
Ayckbourn's first West End hit comedy of confusion. A lazy summer Sunday in the late 60's. Ginny has fallen in love with Greg and wants Philip to leave her alone. So she sets off to see Philip and tell him once-and-for-all. Greg thinks she's visiting her parents and discovers Philips address so decides to pay a surprise visit and ask for her hand. For once, Philip's wife is still at home when Greg arrives before Ginny. Confused?
English rose Lucy Honeychurch is touring Italy with her prim spinster cousin Charlotte Bartlett as chaperone. Charlotte is quick to step in when Lucy makes the mistake of fraternising with the lower-class Mr Emerson and his son George at their Florentine pensione. However, when she witnesses Lucy and George kissing, she has no option but to whisk Lucy away to Rome. Back home at the family's Surrey estate Lucy becomes engaged to the eminently suitable (but priggish and pretentious) Cecil Vyse. Charlotte has sworn Lucy to secrecy over the kiss with George, but will Lucy be able to repress her feelings when she discovers that the Emersons have taken a house in the village? With its cast of vivid characters, this elegant comedy written in 1908, is widely recognized as one of the finest novels of the twentieth century. The award-winning Merchant Ivory film adaptation in 1985 was voted number nine in The Guardian's list of the best romantic films of all time.
Wiletta Mayer is a talented African-American actress who has spent a lifetime building a career in the theatre. Now she is on Broadway, rehearsing Chaos in Belleville, an anti-lynching play with a white director. As rehearsals progress, Wiletta finds it increasingly difficult to relate to the part she is playing. Will she be able to overcome her misgivings and let the show go on? Peppered with knowing humour and richly drawn characters, this vivid depiction of backstage life smartly satirises the white dominated theatre scene of the fifties.
Ustinov Studio. Part of a Season of plays from North America
Fog and creepily haunted houses, supernatural happenings, sea mists and dark stormy nights, lonely funerals and creaking attic doors, all combine in this gripping adaptation of Susan Hill's tense and thrilling story to create a play that taps our primal fears. A grieving lawyer believes a curse has been cast over him and his family by the spectre of the woman in black. In an attempt to exorcise the spirit he engages a sceptical young actor to help him tell his story. His plan begins innocently enough, but as the border between reality and fantasy blur, the horror starts and the flesh begins to creep..