Theatre News

Private Peaceful stage show to embark on tour in 2022

Michael Morpurgo’s piece heads out on tour

Private Peaceful
Private Peaceful

The Nottingham Playhouse production of Michael Morpurgo's Private Peaceful will embark on a tour after its February 2022 premiere.

Adapted for the stage by Simon Reade and directed by Elle While, Morpurgo's Carnegie Medal-shortlisted 2003 novel follows a young soldier who reflects on his life from the trenches.

The author, who said that the text is his favourite work, said today: "Young men and young women who grew up just like Private Peaceful, at home, safe with their families, went off in their millions to the battlefields of the First World War from all over the world. What followed was universal human suffering on a scale never witnessed in human history before. The universality of the tragedy disguises all too easily that each one of those who went was a son or a daughter, loved and so often, lost. Private Peaceful was one of those.

"It's so important to me, and not because I wrote the story, that his story and the story of all the others, is told and told again. It's wonderful to me that through this extraordinary play, the story is being told in theatres all over this country."

The tour will open at Chichester Festival Theatre on 1 March 2022, with subsequent stops including Bromley, Cambridge, Oxford, Hayes, Hull, Birmingham, Bath, Blackpool, Malvern, Coventry, Guildford, Crewe and Norwich. Further venues are still to be announced.

While added: "I am so delighted to bring this extraordinarily talented team back together to fully realise this powerful new adaptation of Michael Morpurgo's classic story of love, loss and loyalty. We cannot wait to finally be able to share this production, which relishes in the power of theatrical storytelling, with live audiences throughout the UK."

The production has design by Lucy Sierra, lighting design by Matt Haskins, sound design by Dan Balfour, movement direction by Neil Bettles, composition by Frank Moon, voice and dialect coaching by Marianne Samuels and casting by Ginny Schiller.

The UK Tour is produced by Jonathan Church Theatre Productions and supported by Arts Council England through a National Lottery Project Grant award. A number of access performances including BSL, Audio Described, Captioned performances and Touch Tours will be available across the tour, with dates to be revealed by relevant venues.