The new season opens at the Liverpool Playhouse with the world premiere of Ghost Stories on 4 February (See News, 20 Nov 2009), which is an 80-minute live experience written and directed by The League of Gentlemen master of the macabre, Jeremy Dyson, and Andy Nyman, co-creator and director of illusionist Derren Brown’s television and stage shows.
Later in February, Northern Broadsides present Medea at the Everyman theatre with Barrie Rutter directing a new version of Euripides’ play by Tom Paulin. In March, Guy Masterson directs writer Tim Whitnall’s moving portrait of comedian Eric Morecambe in Theatre Tours International’s and Feather Productions’ Morecambe which visits the Playhouse on 8 March. The one man show commemorates the 25th anniversary of Morecambe's untimely final curtain and has Bob Golding cast in the role.
Just before the Easter weekend, a co-production between Kneehigh Theatre and Bristol Old Vic arrives to the Liverpool Everyman. Gemma Bodinetz, Everyman and Playhouse artistic director, said: “The theatres are delighted to be able to bring the irrepressible theatre company Kneehigh Theatre (The Bacchae, Brief Encounter, Don John, The Red Shoes, Cymbeline) to the Everyman in March for three weeks. Kneehigh’s Hansel & Gretel will lead audiences into a world of darkness, wit, and wonder, with a tender and terrifying new version of the children’s classic, told by the masters of storytelling.”
During the run of Hansel & Gretel, Northern Broadsides return to the city for a second time, at the Playhouse, with Mike Poulton’s deliciously witty new version of Chaucer’s classic reclaims The Canterbury Tales for contemporary audiences on 23 March. Following this will be Shared Experience’s production of Tennessee Williams’ brilliant and compelling autobiographical portrait of a family in crisis, The Glass Menagerie. Directed by Polly Teale, who most recently directed the Everyman’s Ten Tiny Toes by Esther Wilson in 2008, the cast will include Imogen Stubbs as Amanda.
Later in April, Liverpool-born and multi award-winning playwright Jonathan Harvey (Beautiful Thing, Gimme Gimme Gimme) returns to the Playhouse, the theatre where he wrote his first play. His new play Canary is an unflinching and often magical story about love and sexuality, set against the changing backdrop of modern Britain from 1960s to present, and is being directed by Hettie MacDonald. Deborah Aydon, Liverpool Playhouse and Everyman executive director, said: “This co-production with English Touring Theatre and Hampstead Theatre will open in Liverpool before going to London and on a short UK tour.”
Closing part one of Everyman and Playhouse 2010 season is PW Productions’ The Woman In Black at the Playhouse on 31 May until 5 June. Now in its 21st year in the West End, where over 7 million people have lived to tell the tale of one of the most chilling and successful theatre events ever staged, Stephen Mallatratt’s adaptation of Susan Hill’s bestseller comes to Liverpool. Robin Herford directs the story of a lawyer who, obsessed with a curse that he believes has been cast over him and his family by a ‘Woman in Black’, engages a sceptical young actor to help him tell his terrifying story and exorcise the fear that grips his soul.
For further information or to book tickets for the Everyman and Playhouse productions call 0151 709 4776.