Chris Goode to adapt punk film Jubilee for the stage

Jubilee will be adapted for the stage by Chris Goode
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Chris Goode is to adapt Derek Jarman’s cult film Jubilee for the stage at the Royal Exchange in Manchester.

The production will take place as the film marks its 40th anniversary, and will star original film cast member Toyah Willcox.

Goode, who joins the Royal Exchange as an associate artist, will adapt and direct Jubilee. It premieres from November 2 to 18, with press night on November 7.

Goode described the project as “brilliantly daunting and irresistible”, adding: “Derek Jarman has been a hero to me for 25 years and the opportunity to stage a brand new adaptation of one of his most iconic films with one of the country’s most iconic theatres is mind-blowing and heart racing in equal measure.”

“Under Sarah Frankcom’s visionary leadership the Royal Exchange continues to consolidate its position as a boldly risk-taking and boundary-exploding venue where we get to come together and talk about the biggest questions of our age in the most exciting ways we can imagine.

“At a time when dialogue and dissidence feel more precious than ever, I want Jubilee to be a celebration of the energy of our anger and our hope.”

It forms part of the Royal Exchange’s winter season, which opens with a new production of Thornton Wilder’s Our Town, directed by Sarah Frankcom.

The Manchester theatre will collaborate with black-led theatre company Talawa on a production of Guys and Dolls, which runs over Christmas.

Directed by Talawa artistic director Michael Buffong, and with choreography by Kenrick ‘H2O’ Sandy, Guys and Dolls is transposed to the streets of Harlem.

The Royal Exchange will also co-produce a new play by James Fritz, called Parliament Square, with the Bush Theatre in London.

Directed by Jude Christian, it explores political protest and opens in October before transferring to the Bush.

The main stage season also includes Kendall Feaver’s The Almighty Sometimes, which won a judges’ award at the Bruntwood Prize in 2015.

Meanwhile, the studio theatre will stage Cosmic Scallies, in a co-production with Graeae, directed by Amit Sharma, and Black Men Walking, in a collaboration with Eclipse Theatre Company and directed by Dawn Walton.

The season also sees Julie Hesmondhalgh return, in a new play called The Greatest Play in the History of the World, and the world premiere of Moments that Changed the World by Andrew Barry and performed by a company of 60 to 85-year-olds.

The season at a glance:

Our Town

By Thornton Wilder
Directed by Sarah Frankcom
September 14 to October 14, press night on September 19

Parliament Square

By James Fritz
Directed by Jude Christian
October 18 to 28, press night on October 20


Adapted and directed by Chris Goode
November 2 to 18, press night on November 7
Co-produced by the Royal Exchange and Chris Goode and Company

Guys and Dolls

By Frank Loesser, Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows
Directed by Michael Buffong
December 2 to January 27, press night on December 7
Co-produced by the Royal Exchange and Talawa Theatre Company

The Almighty Sometimes

By Kendall Feaver
Directed by Katy Rudd
February 9 to 24, 2018, press night on February 14

Cosmic Scallies

By Jackie Hagan
Directed by Amit Sharma
September 27 to October 14, press night on September 28
Co-produced by the Royal Exchange and Graeae Theatre Company

Black Men Walking

By Testament
Directed by Dawn Walton
January 18 to February 3, 2018, press night on January 22
Co-produced by the Royal Exchange and Eclipse Theatre Company