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Almeida season to include Tammy Faye and The Secret Life of Bees musicals

Elton John, Jake Shears and James Graham tackle Tammy Faye

The Almeida Theatre
© Philip Vile

The Almeida in north London has unveiled its new season of shows.

The venue will host the world premiere of Tammy Faye, penned by Elton John, Jake Shears and James Graham, directed by Almeida artistic director Rupert Goold.

The show runs from 13 October to 3 December, with a cast led by Katie Brayben (Beautiful) as Tammy Faye, Tony Award-nominee Andrew Rannells (The Book of Mormon, Girls) as Jim, and Olivier Award-nominee Zubin Varla (Fun Home) as Jerry Falwell. You can see the full cast and creative team here.

The venue will also host a new revival of Streetcar Named Desire, featuring Paul Mescal, Anjana Vasan and Lydia Wilson – find out more here. It runs from 10 December to 4 February.

Into 2023, February sees the world premiere of Lulu Raczka's Women, Beware the Devil, a haunting play set in the 17th century filled with treachery and trickery. (11 February to 25 March).

There will also be the UK premiere of The Secret Life of Bees, written by Lynn Nottage (Sweat), Duncan Sheik (Spring Awakening) and Susan Birkenhead (Jelly's Last Jam).

The musical is based on the best-selling novel by Sue Monk Kidd, which tells the story of two women who find sanctuary at a remote honey bee farm. Directed by Whitney White, it runs from 4 April to 27 May.

The venue will also present a trilogy of community productions from 2023-2025 exploring what it means to live, work, pray, celebrate and mourn in Islington.

Goold said: "After a wonderful, if challenging, year since reopening we are thrilled to be presenting this exciting season of work that builds on relationships we have with artists new and familiar, our local community, and above all with the audiences that continue to discover and cherish the uniqueness of our building.

"It was inspiring to experience the responses to Spring Awakening last Christmas – it seemed that audience members reacted strongly to a musical that chimed so powerfully with contemporary feeling. So we're very excited to be producing two new musicals, from two sets of powerhouse writers, that also speak clearly to the present day.

"Our associate Director Rebecca Frecknall made her name with her extraordinary award-winning production of Tennessee Williams' Summer and Smoke and now she's taking on another Williams classic A Streetcar Named Desire with a blindingly good cast.

"Since we re-opened the Almeida after Covid lockdowns, we've presented new writing from Lolita Chakrabarti, Yomi Ṣode, Josh Azouz, Beth Steel, Peter Morgan, and Dipo Baruwa-Etti's play The Clinic goes into previews next week. To that list, add another new voice: Lulu Raczka and her play Women, Beware the Devil, a darkly comic, twisting tale of treachery and trickery.

"Following the success of The Key Workers Cycle earlier this year which featured an 80-strong community cast, we're also announcing a trilogy of community productions taking place over three years, exploring the real Islington featuring people who live and work here.

"We continue our commitment to offering affordable tickets – our tickets start at £10, with £5 tickets available to 25s and under, in addition to our Almeida For Free performances on all productions."