The Rose Theatre Kingston has announced its 2014 season, with productions of Michael Frayn's Donkeys' Years, Brian Friel's Translations and an adaptation of Jacqueline Wilson's Hetty Feather.
As previously announced, current artistic director Stephen Unwin steps down at the end of the 2013 season, officially finishing at the end of December, after five years in the post. The new 2014 season has been programmed by executive director Jerry Gunn and assistant producer Naomi Webb. Unusually, the Rose board have decided not to appoint a successor to Unwin, so the theatre will be without any artistic director for the foreseeable future. A theatre spokesperson told WhatsOnStage that Gunn and Webb would continue to programme "for at least two further seasons".
The season sees partnerships with other theatre companies, as well as shows from Rose Productions. It kicks off, from 27 January to 1 February 2014, with Noel Coward's Fallen Angels starring Jenny Seagrove and Sara Crowe.
Next up is an in-house production of Michael Frayn's Donkeys' Years directed by Lisa Spirling. The farce, set around a university reunion dinner, runs from 12-22 February 2014 (previews from 6 February).
Following Donkeys' Years is the Theatre Royal Bath production of Moon Tiger starring Jane Asher, directed by former artistic director of the Rose Stephen Unwin which runs from 24 February to 1 March 2014 as part of a UK tour.
The theatre will then play host to visiting productions; all-male Shakespeare company Propeller's Midsummer Night's Dream and Comedy of Errors (11-15 March 2014) and Mark Ravenhill's translation of Brecht's The Life of Galileo for the RSC starring Ian McDiarmid (24-29 March 2014).
These are followed by a Rose Theatre Kingston, English Touring Theatre and Sheffield Theatres co-production of Brian Friel's Translations, running from 22 April to 3 May 2014 and directed by James Grieve.
The Rose is also continuing its commitment to programming work for younger audiences throughout 2014. First of all is an adaptation by David Wood (Goodnight Mister Tom) of Philippa Pearce's Tom's Midnight Garden (4 – 8 March 2014). Then, Rose Theatre Kingston in co-production with Kenny Wax Productions and William Archer in association with Novel Theatre bring Jacqueline Wilson's Hetty Feather to life on the Rose stage (5-20 April 2014). Finally, Tall Stories return to the Rose with the stage show of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler's The Gruffalo (27 May – 1 June 2014).
Throughout the season there will also be a range of one night events including a rehearsed reading of Iris Murdoch's The Sea The Sea (15 January 2014), Aida (25 January) by Opera de Baugé and Beckett's Krapps Last Tape (13 January).
Robert O'Dowd, chief executive of the theatre, commented: "For the past six years the Rose has been committed to bringing world class theatre to Kingston. In 2014 we will continue to produce our own work and develop exciting new partnerships with other theatres and production companies."