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Alice in Wonderland leads new Mercury Theatre season

It's all going down (the rabbit hole) in Colchester!

Artwork for Alice in Wonderland

Colchester's Mercury Theatre has revealed details of its forthcoming 2022-23 season, headlined by Olivier Award-winning playwright Mike Kenny's adaptation of Alice in Wonderland.

The much-loved Lewis Carroll tale is reimagined with Alice about to sit an exam before plunging down the rabbit hole. Featuring music by Ivan Scott, direction by Emma Earle, design by Anisha Fields and movement by Dan Canham, the production runs from 29 July until 14 August.

Another highlight of the season is the previously announced collaboration with Wiltshire Creative and Mischief. The premiere of Good Luck, Studio will be staged from 30 September to 15 October, written by Henry Shields and directed by Henry Lewis, who will bring their own brand of chaos to a kids' TV show.

The annual pantomime will be Beauty and the Beast, running from 26 November 2022 to 25 January 2023 and starring Antony Stuart Hicks and Dale Superville. The piece is written by Andrew Pollard, directed by Donnchadh O'Briain, choreographed by Simon Hardwick and designed by Jasmine Swan, with lighting by Ben Ormerod and musical direction by Paul Herbert.

Also set for the festive season, and tailored to younger audiences, is the Nottingham Playhouse Theatre Company's production of Pinocchio, written by Sarah Middleton and directed by Hannah Stone, playing in the Mercury Studio from 7 to 31 December.

Steve Mannix, executive director, said: "We are going from strength to strength as we continue to harness the potential of our eco-friendly building having completed our £11.8m refurbishment last year. Against all the odds and the challenges of the last two years for us all, our work has continued to expand. We are now able to programme exciting new work in our Studio year-round and grow our education and participatory programme in new dedicated spaces. We are thrilled to be able to co-produce with new partners like Mischief for the world premiere of Good Luck, Studio while also supporting new emerging artists and locally-based creatives in the East. It's an exciting time to welcome you to Mercury – they say, ‘build it and they will come' and you have – look forward to seeing you soon!"

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