World-class acts take to the stage during Greenwich Theatre's magical autumn season (From News Shopper)
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World-class acts take to the stage during Greenwich Theatre's magical autumn season
Music, comedy and classic plays from all over the world are set to bring a touch of magic to Greenwich thanks to a passionate theatre director.
James Haddrell, artistic and executive director of Greenwich Theatre, has searched high and low for the finest contemporary shows to ensure the venue’s autumn season holds something for everyone.
Vibe caught up with him this week to find out about the fabulous programme, which kicks off on August 30 with A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
He said: “This is a great season for us.
“I think it really lays out what Greenwich Theatre is all about.
“With a staff no bigger than a small fringe theatre, in just one season we are bringing a show from Los Angeles, co-producing a new musical in Camberwell and a Pulitzer Prize winning musical in Greenwich, bringing a Scottish tour of an Arthur Miller play to London, introducing a resident band and a resident magic company – and of course, we’ll be rounding off the season with one of London’s favourite pantomimes (Robin Hood).”
James has even persuaded one show to cross the pond just for Greenwich Theatre.
He added: “The show coming from Los Angeles is a modern version of Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya.
“I found the show at the Edinburgh Festival last year and we’ve managed to persuade the company to come to Greenwich, but this is unlike any production of Chekhov I have ever seen before.
“It’s a unique hour of utterly joyful theatre presented by an international cast, with impeccable choreography and a razor sharp sense of humour.
“Bringing the show to London is a massive coup for Greenwich Theatre and I hope as many people as possible come and see the show.”
Musical RENT will be taking to the stage between September 5 and 16, starring Steph Fearon – semi-finalist of BBC One’s Over The Rainbow contest.
James continued: “There’s a real musical theatre theme emerging this season.
“As well as co-producing the European Premiere of the Australian musical The Hatpin in Camberwell, we have the first London performances of RENT since the iconic musical was seen in the West End.
“I’ve also tracked down a new version of Faust performed by an astonishing company of actor musicians.
“Faust is a great example of the work we do with emerging theatre companies – DumbWise Theatre Company presented Faust at the Brighton Festival where I saw it, and they won an Argus Angel there, but we are now supporting the company in presenting the show for a week in London and looking to the future.
“If your idea of a great night at the theatre is a musical descent into hell led by a trombone playing devil then this is the show for you.”
But it’s not an easy task organising such a fantastic line-up.
As James tells us, one of the challenging things about presenting theatre outside of the West End is acquiring stage rights.
“It is unusual to see professional productions of work by writers like Tennessee Williams or Arthur Miller outside of the West End, but this season we are announcing another coup – we are transferring a production of Arthur Miller’s rarely performed classic The Man Who Had All The Luck from Scotland for a strictly limited one week run in October.” He said.
“We are also experimenting with two new residencies this season.
“First we have The Waggon Band, a folk collective from Hampshire, taking over the bar on the second Sunday of each month for a new music night.
“Then we have Simply Told, a unique young theatre company now based at Greenwich Theatre, who transform the theatre into The Houdin Club once a month for a late night of music and magic.”
The theatre prides itself on keeping its ticket prices low.
Families can come to children’s shows for as little as £7 each and a visit to the Houdin Club costs only £5.
James added: “With such an exciting line-up and tickets so affordable, we’re expecting a busy season at Greenwich Theatre.”
For the full programme visit greenwichtheatre.org.uk