10 theatre highlights of Hull UK City of Culture

We round-up some of the things we’re most excited about coming up in the city this year

Hull Marina
Hull Marina
© Flickr/Andi Campbell-Jones

2017 sees Hull assume the mantle of UK City of Culture, an award given every four years to a city that demonstrates the belief in the transformative power of culture. Throughout the year a programme of art and culture will take over the city. Here's a few things you need to know about Hull.

Full name: Kingston upon Hull
Location: On the River Hull in the East Riding of Yorkshire
Population: 257,710
Famous people from Hull: Tom Courtenay, Reece Shearsmith and Maureen Lipman

The City of Culture initiative began in Derry-Londonderry in 2013. Hull is the second winner of the award, we take a look at some of this year's theatre highlights:

1. The Hypocrite,

Hull Truck Theatre, 24 February to 25 March

Mark Addy as Sir John Hotham in Richard Bean's The Hypocrite
Mark Addy as Sir John Hotham in Richard Bean's The Hypocrite

Olivier Award-winner Richard Bean's The Hypocrite will receive its world premiere when it opens at the Hull Truck on 1 March 2017. The comedy is inspired by the moment King Charles I was denied entry to Hull – an event which sparked the English Civil War.

2. Flood

Various locations, 1 February to 1 October

Innovative theatre company Slung Low bring their brand of site specific theatre to Hull to tell the story of floods that end our world. Written by James Philips, it's the company's most ambitious, experimental project to date, combining live performance, special effects, digital manifestations and other platforms to tell Flood in multiple parts across the entire year.

3. Richard III

Hull Truck Theatre, 4 to 27 May

Hull Truck Theatre
Hull Truck Theatre

To celebrate their 25th year, Northern Broadsides' artistic director Barrie Rutter will helm a production of Shakespeare's Richard III at Hull Truck Theatre. Opening on 4 May, the production brings the celebrated company back to its roots: it staged Richard III as its first play in the Marina Boatshed in Hull.

4. 2097: We Made Ourselves Over

Various locations, 1 September to 31 December

© Blast Theory

What do you get if you take a city full of practically forgotten phone boxes and the internationally renowned artists group Blast Theory? Perhaps one of the most intriguing projects of Hull's offering. Known for their adventurous work using interactive media, the Portslade based group present 2097: We Made Ourselves Over, set on the cusp of a new century the piece invites participants to re-imagine Hull 80 years into the future.

5. Now/Then

Various locations, 1 April to 30 June

Hop into a cab for this unique journey around a city that you may or may not already know intimately. Using the streets of the city and a soundtrack of music, narration and conversation, you'll embark on a twenty minute ride in pursuit of a little boy, walking all alone. Not your standard Uber ride, then.

6. Mighty Atoms

Hull Truck, 8 June to 1 July

Also receiving a world premiere is Amanda Whittington's Mighty Atoms which tells the story of a women's boxercise class run in a struggling pub on a tough Hull street. When the pub is on the brink of closure, the ladies decide there's no better way to raise funds than an unlicensed fight night. It will be directed by Hull Truck AD Mark Babych.

7. Weathered Estates

University of Hull, 15 to 18 February

Playwright Zodwa Nyoni (Boi Boi is Dead) and Hull theatre company The Roaring Girls present a contemporary retelling of Euripides' Women of Troy. The play tells the story of four displaced women as they flee their homes in search of safety. It is directed by Amy Skinner, the programme leader for Drama at the University of Hull.

8. Our Mutual Friend

Hull Truck Theatre, 16 to 19 August

This new adaptation by Bryony Lavery, transports Dickens' 1865 novel to present day Hull where a drowned man is pulled from the Humber. It will feature around 100 performers from the Hull Truck Youth Theatre groups and it's the first time the youth groups (aged 11 and up) have united on the main stage.

9. Noah

Venues around Old Town, 25 to 30 June

Hull's Old Town
Hull's Old Town
© Photo: Flickr/leftcase

Reenactments of medieval mystery plays used to be commonplace in Hull, but the tradition has faded in more recent times. Now Hull's Mystery Play Committee aims to bring local communities back together to present a theatrical production and festival exploring the story of Noah and its contemporary resonances.

10. Henry V

Beverley Minster, 7 to 8 February

Antic Disposition present their critically acclaimed adaptation of Shakespeare’s Henry V in the beautiful surrounds of Beverley Minster, about 10 miles from the city centre. The production will tour some of the country's most picturesque cathedrals, and transports the Battle of Agincourt from 1415 to 1915 and the First World War.