A play written by John Godber during lockdown is to be performed by the playwright, his wife and their daughter at the Stephen Joseph theatre in Scarborough. It is the centrepiece of an autumn season of work that marks the theatre’s long-awaited reopening for socially distanced audiences.
Angélique is a gifted chocolate maker crippled by social anxiety and Jean-René is the boss of a failing chocolate factory. When Angélique takes a job in Jean-René’s struggling factory, a fragile love affair unfolds. Funny, tender and painfully awkward, Romantics Anonymous is a delicious love story about breaking the mould and finding the courage to be happy.
When Hester Collyer (Helen McCrory) is found by her neighbours in the aftermath of a failed suicide attempt, the story of her tempestuous affair with a former RAF pilot and the breakdown of her marriage to a High Court judge begins to emerge. With it comes a portrait of need, loneliness and long-repressed passion.
Behind the fragile veneer of post-war civility burns a brutal sense of loss and longing.
The National Theatre have been bringing the best of their productions to the public to watch for free during the UK coronavirus lockdown. Joining the brilliant collection of productions that have been streaming weekly from #NationalTheatreAtHome is our Terence Rattigan's The Deep Blue Sea, which played at the National in 2016. It will be available to watch in the week of July 9th - 16th 2020. Catch all the details of this fantastic (and free!) production here: https://www.nationaltheatre.org.uk/shows/nt-at-home-the-deep-blue-sea.
Jermyn Street Theatre of London's West End are streaming Terence Rattigan's illustrious play In Praise of Love tonight at 7:30pm. First performed at the Duchess Theatre, London in 1973, In Praise of Love is a powerful story of deception and fatality in relationships. Egotistical left-wing literary critic Sebastian and his East European refugee wife Lydia, with the best of intentions, deceive each other over Lydia's fatal illness. The play was based in part on the relationship between Rattigan's friend, the actor Rex Harrison, and his wife Kay Kendall, who died of leukaemia. Rex Harrison went on to play the part based on himself in the Broadway production of the play at the Morosco Theatre in 1974.
Catch the live reading of the play on YouTube here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QIspZ8jyAbc&feature=youtu.be
The most recent work to come from John Godber and Jane Thornton is the six part radio drama called 'Essentials', which takes place over breakfast in the kitchen of a Yorkshire family. Tension, comedy and burnt toast whilst they wrestle with the realities of Lockdown UK. Short, punchy episodes to keep us going amidst the current crisis!
Have a listen here: https://essentials_johngodber.buzzsprout.com/?fbclid=IwAR0wGPUNswv4Y1pV1_ae1t3bLtiolUDaYx_fTLlnwS96HgqiRatQ9VPsQxg.
The Stage have published a review of Noël Coward's debut play from May 6, 1920; 100 years ago today!
I'll Leave It To You opened on May 3 at the Gaiety Theatre in Manchester. The critic commented that "the dialogue is witty at times, and many pungent allusions catch the fancy of the audience. The piece throughout was greatly relished on Monday; it is some time since the Gaiety rang with such hearty and continuous laughter". It was also noted that "Noël Coward gives a spirited performance as Bobbie".
I'll Leave It To Youlater transferred to the West End, opening on July 21, 1920. The Stage again praised it, describing it as "clever young Noël Coward's bright and entertaining piece".
In times of trouble, everyone needs a little something to bring joy to their day.
Greatest Days, the film that will be written by Tim Firth as an adaptation of his hit musical The Band, will be the necessary "uplift" we all need right now, the BBC reports. Like the musical, the film will be about a group of women who get back together to see their favourite boy band after 25 years, featuring all the best Take That hits and even a new song written by the band especially for the event. With Tim Firth writing and all Take That members intimately involved in the movie-making process, Greatest Days is set to bring some happiness to the nation amidst the pandemic crisis - just as the Mamma Mia! film did in 2008! We cannot wait to see what Tim has in store for us.
In 1985, Bernard Pomerance wrote Melons, a play concerned with the diverse meanings of the land, the laws of ownership and communal reconstruction for the indigenous peoples of the US. In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, Bernard's daughter Eve has found a pertinent relevance of the play to our current circumstances.
The Navajo Nations in the American Southwest have been extremely hard hit by the coronavirus. To raise money for necessary medical supplies for this community, a stellar cast have come together to perform a reading of Melons on Zoom this upcoming weekend, including the likes of Raoul Trujillo and Michael Greyeyes.
Join them this May 2nd-6th at 6pm EST (11pm BST) for a wonderful reading of this timely play for an urgent cause. Click here to head to the Facebook event to find out all the information you need to watch Melons this weekend.
Sydney Theatre Company have produced a wonderful short piece of theatre for us all to enjoy from the comfort of our homes. Iconic Australian actress Heather Mitchell has recorded one of Noël Coward's pieces from his Collected Verse, 'Social Grace', a wonderful little scene in which a young female theatregoer meets a great actor she has long idolised.
Just a little reminder that Wise Children's new podcast is available to stream on Youtubeand Vimeo!
Despite the cancellation of her US Romantics Anonymous tour and UK tour of Malory Towers, Emma Rice continues to bring her unique brand of theatre magic to us in our homes. In her podcast, she shares clips from all three of her shows including Wise Children, along with anecdotes, thoughts, and inspiration to stick together and get through these difficult times.
Wise Children can also be watched on BBC iPlayer here! Originally opening in 2018, Wise Children tells the story of twin chorus girls Nora and Dora Chance, in a celebration of show business, family, forgiveness and hope. Expect show girls and Shakespeare, sex and scandal, music, mischief and mistaken identity – and butterflies by the thousand.
As if a reminder were ever needed... What a joy it is to dance and sing!