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Production news round-up: The Ferryman extends its run and Chess to have West End revival

Chess is to run at the London Coliseum
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This week in production news, The Ferryman extends its run at Gielgud Theatre in London until May next year and the musical Chess is to have a West End revival at the London Coliseum.


The Ferryman will extend its West End run for the second time from January 6 to May 19. Premiering at London’s Royal Court earlier this year the production is now showing at the West End’s Gielgud Theatre.
Author: Jez Butterworh
Director: Sam Mendes
Producers: Sonia Friedman, Neal Street Productions and Royal Court Theatre Productions

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Jonathan Bailey and Lesley Nicol are to join Ben Batt in the cast of The York Realist. The production opens at the Donmar Warehouse on February 8, running until March 24, before transferring to Sheffield Theatres.
Author: Peter Gill
Cast also includes: Lucy Black, Brian Fletcher, Katie West and Matthew Wilson
Producer: Donmar Warehouse and Sheffield Theatres

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East is to be revived at the King’s Head Theatre, where it had its London debut in 1975. It will run from January 10 to February 3, with press night on January 12. The cast will include Russell Barnett, Jack Condon, James Craze, Debra Penny and Boadicea Ricketts.
Author: Steven Berkoff
Director: Jessica Lazar
Producer: Bridie Bischoff and Tom Ford for Atticist

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Casting has been announced for Goats, which runs at the Royal Court Theatre in London from November 24 to December 30. The cast includes Ali Barouti, Ishia Bennison, Carlos Chahine, Amir El-Masry, Souad Faress, Amer Hlehel and Ethan Kai.
Author: Liwaa Yazji
Director: Hamish Pirie
Cast also includes: Khalid Laith, Adnan Mustafa, Isabella Nefar, Farshid Rokey and Sirine Saba
Producer: Royal Court Theatre

Napoleon Disrobed is to run at the Theatre Royal Plymouth from January 25 to February 10 and at London’s Arcola Theatre from February 14 to March 10. Based on the novel The Death of Napoleon, the production explores the significance of power.
Author: Told by an Idiot
Director: Kathryn Hunter
Design: Michael Vale (set), Aideen Malone (lighting), Adrienne Quartly (sound)
Producers: Told by an Idiot, Theatre Royal Plymouth and Arcola Theatre

Raphael Acloque, Mohammad Amiri and Trevor Fox are among the cast announced for The Jungle, which runs at London’s Young Vic from December 7 to January 6. The production’s cast is international with many from refugee backgrounds. Press night will be on December 15.
Authors: Joe Murphy and Joe Robertson
Directors: Stephen Daldry and Justin Martin
Design: Miriam Buether
Cast also includes: Michael Gould, Ammar Haj Ahmad, Ansu Kabia, Alex Lawther, Jo McInnes, John Pfumojena, Rachel Redford, Rachid Sabitri, Mohamed Sarrar, Ben Turner and Nahel Tzegai

Peter Wight and Tom Vaughan-Lawlor are to join the West End cast of The Birthday Party. Running from January 9 to April 14 at London’s Harold Pinter Theatre, Wight and Vaughan-Lawlor will appear with a cast including previously announced Pearl Mackie and Zoe Wanamaker.
Author: Harold Pinter
Director: Ian Rickson
Producer: Sonia Friedman Productions

DollyWould is to have a UK tour, following its run at the 2017 Edinburgh Fringe. It will run in London at Soho Theatre from March 19 to April 14, with full tour details to be announced.
Authors: Rebbeca Biscuit and Louise Mothersole
Producer: Sh!t Theatre

James Pidgeon has announced his first season as director of Shoreditch Town Hall, which will include Juan Ignacio Tula and Stefan Kinsman’s Santa Madera for London International Mime Festival. Also featuring in the season is The Claim by Tim Cowbury, a theatrical response to the stories of refugees in the UK.


Chess is to return for a run in the West End next year. It will play at the London Coliseum from April 26 to June 2, with press night on May 1. The production tells the story of a world championship chess match taking place during the Cold War.
Authors: Benny Andersson, Bjorn Ulvaeus and Tim Rice
Director: Laurence Connor
Producers: Michael Linnit, Michael Grade in collaboration with English National Opera, and by arrangement with Three Knights Limited, the Shubert Organisation and Robert Fox

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Sting’s debut musical The Last Ship, which ran on Broadway for 3 months, is to have its UK premiere at Northern Stage in Newcastle. Opening on March 12 it will run for four weeks before touring around the UK until July 7, showing at locations including Liverpool, Northampton and Cardiff.
Author: Sting (music and lyrics)
Director: Lorne Campbell
Design: 59 Productions
Producer: Northern Stage, Karl Sydow and Kathryn Schenker

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Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre has announced its 2018 season, which will include a revival of Little Shop of Horrors, As You Like It and Peter Pan. The season will open in May next year with JM Barrie’s Peter Pan and close in September with Howard Ashman and Alan Menken’s Little Shop of Horrors.
Producer: Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre

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The Lyric Hammersmith in London has announced its 2018 season which will include Jubilee starring Toyah Willcox. Sean O’Casey’s The Plough and the Stars and Philip Venables’ opera 4:48 Psychosis will also feature in the theatre’s upcoming season.

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Robert Cucciolo and Glory Crampton will lead the cast of new musical Rothschild and Sons, it has been announced. They will appear alongside School of Rock actor Gary Trainor at London’s Park Theatre from January 24 to February 17.
Authors: Jerry Bock, Sheldon Harnick (music and lyrics), Sherman Yellen (book)
Director: Jeffrey B Moss
Producer: Arnold Mittelman in association with Park Theatre

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New musical Eugenius! is to have a full production at London’s the Other Palace, running from January 22 to March 3. The production will feature the voice of Brian Blessed and tell the story of a teenage boy’s pursuit to create a Hollywood comic book movie.
Authors: Ben Adams, Chris Wilkins
Director: Ian Talbot
Design: Hannah Wolfe (set and costume), Andrew Ellis (lighting), Gareth Owen (sound)
Choreographer: Aaron Renfree
Producers: Warwick Davis and Kevin Wood

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Matthew McKenna will star in Bananaman the Musical at the Southwark Playhouse in London. It will show from December 15 to January 20, with press night on January 4. The cast also includes Marc Pickering and Jodie Jacobs.
Author: Leon Parris
Director: Mark Perry
Producer: Sightline Entertainment

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Sheridan Smith has announced details of her debut tour which includes a performance at the Royal Albert Hall in London. Sheridan: The Album is to be released on November 5 with a TV launch on ITV. Locations she will perform at include Liverpool, Manchester, Edinburgh and London.

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Hofesh Shechter Company has announced two new productions as well as further dates for its show Grand Finale. Clowns/new creation is to run at the Lyric Hammersmith in London from May 8 to 12, and Grand Finale will tour from February to May at locations that include Birmingham and Brighton.
Producers: Hofesh Shechter Company, Home and the Lyric Hammersmith

Menagerie, an immersive, erotic theatre performance, is to take place in a secret location in east London, providing audiences with an “erotic theatrical evening”. The production runs on November 30.
Producer: House of Kittens theatre company

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